A classic French dessert – so easy to make, and can be made in advance for a dinner with friends, so that you can be with your guests instead of in the kitchen.

This recipe is best made about 6 hours before serving, but even better when left overnight, do the burning of the sugar just prior to serving though.


Difficulty: Easy

Preparation time: 10 minutes

Cooking time: 1 hour

Serves 4 to 6 people (depending on appetites)



500ml single or double cream

6 medium egg yolks

60g caster sugar

1 vanilla pod (1 tsp vanilla essence can be used but a vanilla pod gives a more delicate flavour)

7 tablespoons of demererra sugar



Split the vanilla pod, scrape the seed out and put into a heavy-based saucepan with the cream – heat gently to boiling point then turn the heat off and leave the cream to cool slightly.

In a mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the caster sugar and gradually whisk in the cream gently and gradually (do not use the cream when it is too hot or you will end up with scrambled eggs).

Use either 6 ramekins or a shallow oven dish, fill with the mixture and place in a roasting tin with water so that it comes up to 1/2 way on the dish or the ramekins – cook in a preheated oven at 160°c for 30 minutes.

Remove from the oven, leave to cool then put in the refrigerator to cool and set.

Just before serving, sprinkle the demererra sugar on top of the cream – then put under a hot grill until the sugar has started to melt and caramelise, or use a kitchen blowtorch to do this.

Wait a minute or two before serving, the sugar should form a crunchy sweet disc on the crèmes brulée.

Bon appétit!

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