Herbs. I am trying to grow them in my garden right now. On some days unsuccessfully, on others I feel a sense of victory. Lavender is one of those herbs that I wish my husband would let me plant, but he says it attracts “too many bees”. I say, all the more to pollinate my tomatoes!
So this recipe was truly inspired by our most recent trip to Carmel Valley Ranch for Spring break. They are known for growing lavender, and all of their bath products are wonderfully relaxing with their lavender scents. To be honest, I was surprised that they didn’t have one lavender based dessert on their menu, and surely this would be one to have! So when we returned from our vacation, I knew immediately that I would have to make this for The Inspired Plate Herbs assignment!
Joining me this month for The Inspired Plate Assignment of Herbs/Clean and Messy is Kim Kelly | San Diego Photographer. I can’t wait to see what she has cooked up for us!
Lavender Creme Brulee. The recipe is adapted from a Martha Stewart recipe on Creme Brulee. I’ve never made creme brulee before, but for this first adventure I opted to make half a batch size, so I used the ratios given below. To give the custard its lavender finish, I infused the creme with 1 tablespoon of culinary lavender for 10 minutes, before using the heated creme to temper the eggs. My ramekins were full, so I cooked the custards at 300 for 60 minutes and started checking the temperature for doneness around 45 minutes, with the goal of cooking them to 175F.
5 eggs yolks
1/4 cup, plus two tablespoons sugar
2 cups heavy whipping creme
1 tablespoon lavender
1 Madagascar vanilla bean
1/2 teaspoon of salt.
Please see the link for the recipe. Infuse the creme for 10 minutes with the lavender and vanilla bean before using to temper the egg yolks and sugar. Sieve mixture into ramekin cups. Bake in an glass dish filled with hot water at 300 C for up to 60 minutes (depending on the depth of your custard). Achieve temperatures of 175F to doneness. The custard should jiggle just a little bit in the center. Cool custard for 3 hours to overnight before serving. Before serving, remove custards from the cold and remove condensation from the tops with a paper towel. Add ~1 Tablespoon of sugar to each top and caramelize with a cooking torch or by broiling in the oven for 3- 4 minutes. If you use an oven, like I did, place custards back in freezer for 15 minutes afterwards before serving!
They turned out wonderfully, and tasted delicious!