I am a big fan of coffee, an even bigger fan of caramel, and these two flavors together really make me happy. This coffee-caramel Crème Brûlée and reminds me of a rich caramel cappuccino. I could eat this every day but generally save it for special occasions.
Crème Brûlée sounds intimidating but it’s really not. The tricky part is making sure that your custard does not cook when adding the hot cream to the egg yolks. Once past that part, it is relatively smooth sailing.
The caramelization of the sugary top can be done in your oven’s broiler. But it is more fun to use a kitchen torch.
More fun than that is going to Home Depot and discussing the pros and cons of different blow torches with the knowledgeable sales staff .
“Exactly what do you plan to use this blow torch for?” the kind salesman finally asked after several minutes of deliberation.
“Crème Brûlée, of course.”
And then we laughed all the way home. Here is the recipe…
They had me at caramel!
I’m trying to get used to Bon Appétit as a replacement for Gourmet and, sadly, it has not quite happened. Every now and then, however, I am surprised by a recipe that I must try.
This month it was the Milk Chocolate-Caramel Tart with Hazelnuts and Espresso, a dessert that speaks to two of my weaknesses – caramel and coffee-flavored anything. Check out the description: This delicious tart has a buttery shortbread crust, a rich hazelnut-caramel filling, a creamy espresso-chocolate topping, and a sprinkling of crunchy cacao nibs (pieces of roasted cacao beans). Amazing, right?
Instead of one large tart, however, I busted out the tartlet pans from overstock and got to work. I halved the recipe which then yielded four mini tartlets - two for Valentine’s Day and the other two for, well, the day after Valentine’s Day. Oh, and because I’m also crazy for Maldon salt, I added a few flakes to the top of the tartlets.
Milk Chocolate-Caramel Tart with Hazelnuts and Espresso
Here’s the recipe if you’d like to give it a try…