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Although we are preparing for the summer, and although after the carnival season we have banned sweets from our table, uh ... we have reduced the amount baked goodies, at least on Sundays let’s treat ourselves with a little sweetness.
These little ramekins of vanilla custard with a nice crunchy caramel topping are just the perfect pudding. They are easily made and you can keep them in the fridge for a couple of days. Just before serving sprinkle them with sugar and caramelize it with a blowtorch, or if you do not have one you can always put them under the grill and wait until the sugar caramelise.
They are velvety and smooth and they taste of lovely vanilla, the contrast with the crispness and the bitterness of the caramelized sugar elevates them to perfection. Andrea and I, real gluttons, ate the four rameking in two days. And we wanted more.
I read the recipe from the February issue of GoodFood and changed it a little.

  • 1/2 vanilla pod
  • 250 ml full fat cream
  • 80 ml di half fat milk
  • 4 egg yolks
  • 3 tbsp caster sugar + 4 heaped tsp caster sugar for topping
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 140 °. Cut the vanilla pod lengthwise, scrape the seeds with a knife and place in a heavy-bottomed pan with the cream, milk, vanilla pod and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat and let stand for 10 minutes. Meanwhile whisk the egg yolks with the sugar until they become thick and pale. Add the vanilla extract and pour the mixture of cream and milk on the eggs, whisking constantly. Use a spoon to remove any foam that has formed on the surface and discard the vanilla pod. Put the ramekins in a shallow tray and pour the mixture in the ramekins.  Put the tray on the bottom shelf of the oven, and pour boiling water until it reaches halfway up the ramekins. Cook for about 35 minutes or until the custard has set. Remove from the oven and cool. Keep in refrigerator until ready to serve. Just before serving sprinkle with sugar and caramelize it.

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