Posted by: njbrown | February 13, 2010

Black Forest Crème Brûlée

February 13, 2010

Black Forest Crème Brûlée

A few days ago, I made the Black Forest cupcakes from Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World, and the combination of tart cherries and chocolate is one that I’ve loved since I had my first Black Forest cake in 1967.  With heavy cream (for the vegan version I used a vegan substitute), cherries and lots of chocolate in the kitchen, I began to wonder what a “Black Forest” crème brûlée would be like, and began to look for recipes.  I found David Rocco’s extremely simple recipe for chocolate crème brûlée, and was doubtful because it was so simple, but it turned out to be lovely – a gentle chocolate flavor and very creamy.  The addition of cherries in syrup, I think, is quite nice.

Chocolate Crème Brûlée

By David Rocco

This is a simple dessert but seems a touch more special than the vanilla version. Serve biscotti on the side for more crunch.

Servings: 2


2 egg yolks
2 tbsp (25 mL) granulated sugar
1 oz (30 g) bittersweet chocolate, chopped and melted
2/3 cup (150 mL) whipping cream
2 tbsp (25 mL) milk
(I added about a quarter teaspoon of vanilla)


2 tbsp (25 mL) packed brown sugar or granulated sugar


In bowl, whisk egg yolks with sugar until thickened; whisk in chocolate, then cream and milk (and vanilla). Pour into two 6-oz (175 mL) ramekins or custard cups. Place in shallow pan; pour in enough boiling water to come halfway up side of ramekin.

Bake in centre of 325°F (160°C) oven until edge is set, centre jiggles slightly and knife inserted in centre comes out creamy, about 35 minutes. Remove from water; let cool on rack. Cover and refrigerate until chilled and set, about 2 hours. (Make-ahead: Refrigerate for up to 2 days.)

Topping: Place cups on small baking sheet; sprinkle evenly with sugar. Using blowtorch or placing 6 inches (15 cm) under broiler, heat until sugar bubbles and darkens, about 2 minutes. Chill, uncovered, for 30 minutes.

Cherry topping:

Vegan Cupcakes called for frozen cherries, but I was unable to find any at this time of year in the stores.  What I did find was pitted red sour cherries in light syrup.  I  put about one cup in a small saucepan with about a tablespoon of granulated sugar, a piece of orange peel, a cinnamon stick, and a scant tablespoon of corn starch, and stirred over medium heat for about 5 minutes until the sauce was clear and thickened.

Not having made crème brûlée since 1974, I was a bit apprehensive about the brulee-ing.  George found his old propane torch that hadn’t been used for years, and it worked well, although I was worried about burning down the kitchen with its quite large flame.  The next time, I’ll be less anxious.



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