Cook'n is the best selling recipe organizer

Volume III
January 27, 2012

Weekly Home / Cook'n & Eat'n

A Valentine's DAY Dessert to Remember

By Alice Osborne

Aunt Annie took a cooking class years ago for the express purpose of learning how to make spectacular desserts. I'll never forget the evening we came to dinner so she could show off her latest accomplishment, "A Valentine's Day dessert to remember, kiddos!"

We could hardly make it through her dinner - we were so anxious to taste this amazing dessert we kept hearing about. "You like chocolate, right? And you've heard of Creme Brulee, right? Well, all I can say is, you're going to taste a dessert to remember!"

And wow, she was not exaggerating. It was divine - all of us were ooohing and aaahhing through the whole thing. What we always got a big kick out of, was how she walked us through every step of the process of making this chocolate wonder. I guess that goes with the territory when you've been to a cooking class - you just have to pass on the good news.

Anyway, before I share the recipe for Chocolate Creme Brulee, here are a few basic tips on how to turn out a perfect brulee, whatever the flavor:

If making traditional creme brulee, and you don't have a vanilla bean, you can use bottled vanilla instead, just be sure you use a high quality vanilla - a brand without the cumerin and consisting of at least 35% alcohol.

Follow your recipe exactly. Creme brulee doesn't do well with shortcuts or sidesteps.

After the custard is baked (in a water bath, of course), spread the granulated sugar evenly on top of each ramekin. This little step ensures a nicely browned and crusty surface. Lots of brulee pros say Turbinado sugar works best because it's finer, spreads well, and burns more evenly.

Don't try to substitute your broiler for a kitchen torch. The cream just gets too warm and oozy. If you can't justify the cost and space for a uni-task item, consider a regular blow torch. This works perfectly and after dessert you can weld and solder with it!

Now for the Valentines Day dessert to remember:

Chocolate Creme Brulee

1 quart heavy cream
1 cup sugar, plus more for dusting
1-ounce chocolate liqueur (recommended: Godiva Liqueur)
1/2 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 ounces cocoa powder
1-ounce unsweetened chocolate
11 large egg yolks

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium sized saucepan over medium-high heat, combine the heavy cream, sugar, liqueur, and vanilla. When the mixture is warm add the cocoa powder and chocolate and whisk until blended.

Place the egg yolks in a large stainless steel bowl. Slowly add the warm chocolate mixture to the eggs, a little at a time, while whisking. Strain and pour into individual porcelain ramekins.

Place the ramekins in a large baking pan. Pour enough hot water into the pan to come half way up the sides of the ramekins. Bake until firm in the center, about 30 minutes. Remove the ramekins from the water bath and let cool completely. Place in the refrigerator for 2 hours. Dust with sugar and caramelize with a propane torch. Serve immediately.

Help on downloading recipes

blog comments powered by Disqus

Contribute to the Cook'n Club!

DVO would love to publish your article, prose, photography and art as well as your cooking, kitchen and nutrition tips, tricks and secrets. Visit the Newsletter Submission / Win Win for All section in our Forum for more information and details.