Crema Catalana

I am a lover of Crème Brûlée and was thrilled to learn that the quintessential Catalan dessert, Crema Catalana was very similar in structure to the Crème Brûlée…now to figure out how they are different! Where Crème Brûlée is a cream flavored with Vanilla Beans (check out my recipe for Crème Brûlée here!), Crema Catalana is steeped with a combination of citrus zests and cinnamon.

Most of the recipes I have seen for Crema Catalana call for a cream cooked on the stove top with cornstarch, and I gave several versions a try…they were ok…but I prefer a baked cream, so I incorporated my technique for the Crème Brûlée, for beautiful and consistent results.

Of Crème Brûlée and Cognac

Is there a more amazing combination? I am have had a hard time finding one. I have become really interested in cognac of late. I have been doing a lot of reading and tasting different types. One of my favorite things in the world is when my dad comes over for an evening of cognac and philosophical conversations.

Marscapone Custard Tart

Some recipes are planned, others are the result of accidents…and this was a beautiful accident. I was preparing for my book launch and kneading bread as my egg whites for my tiramisu were whipping up. I got them to that beautiful firm peak, and proceeded to mix my mascarpone egg yolk mixture in…and I figured, I would just let my KitchenAid mix them together on the lowest setting. Wrong! I always say fold egg whites in by hand, and I didn’t follow my own advice! As the two mixed, the egg whites fell and turned into a delicious but liquidy mess that would never work for tiramisu.

Crème Brûlée

Nico loves Crème Brûlée, and I love baking him delicious things! I just refilled my butane torch and have been itching to see if my Crème Brûlée would be improved by using one of the vanilla beans I brought back from Hawaii instead of the vanilla extract I was using previously.

OMG! It. Was. Amazing! Totally worth using a vanilla bean, and you can make vanilla extract out of once used beans by submerging them in vodka for a month or so! If you don’t have vanilla beans, don’t worry, replace the bean with 1-2 teaspoons of vanilla extract.