Candy Cap Crème brûlée (by Don King)
Yield: 4 servings (6oz)
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 4 egg yolks
- 1/2 cup sugar, more for topping
- 1/2 vanilla bean, split (or 1 teaspoon vanilla extract)
- 7 grams dried candy cap mushrooms
- pinch of salt
- boiling water
In a small saucepan over medium heat, heat the cream, vanilla bean (scrape the seeds from the inside and add them, too), and mushrooms until almost boiling, when bubbles begin to appear around the edges. Remove from heat, cover, and let steep for one hour.
Preheat oven to 325. In a medium bowl, beat the egg yolks, sugar, and salt until light in color and the sugar is thoroughly dissolved. Heat the cream mixture to same point as step one. Strain out the vanilla bean and mushrooms and stir about 1/2 cup into the egg mixture, stirring constantly. Continue to add the remainder of the cream gradually, stirring constantly (if you rush this process, you run the risk of the cream cooking the eggs). Strain through a fine mesh sieve (to capture the mushrooms and any bits of egg shell that may be in the mixture) into a Pyrex measuring cup (or any vessel that has a handle and pour spout).
Arrange 4 6-ounce ramekins in a medium to large baking dish. Evenly fill each ramekin with the custard mixture. Fill the baking dish with boiling water until it’s at least halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
Carefully place in oven and bake for 30-40 minutes, until the centers are barely set (they should still jiggle a little). Remove from oven and cool completely. Refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
Just before serving, sprinkle a coating of sugar on top of each custard. Using a kitchen torch, slowly melt the sugar until if forms a crust, and then continue to torch until some parts turn very dark, almost burnt (alternatively, you can use a broiler for this step). Serve immediately.