I was drinking a cup of iced chai yesterday thinking that it would make a great creme brulee, and why not add pumpkin just because? I’ve made vanilla bean creme brulee before and it’s different than your average dessert but not hard. The creme part is a basic custard and the brulee is the crunchy caramelized sugar topping. Bonus points for the make ahead factor, the custards are fine in the fridge for a day or so. Add the sugar and toast it right before serving, the secret is to get the sugar to caramelize without heating up the custard. The best past of a creme brulee is cracking the sugar crust!
I love pumpkin spice more than any one rightfully should but sometimes I want to mix it up a little. I absolutely hate getting a ‘pumpkin spice -insert food here-‘ when all it tastes like is a mouthful of cinnamon, extra bonus fail points for that awful gritty texture you sometimes get. That was definitely something I wanted to avoid.
Make sure you read all the way through before starting, there are a few steps involved that you probably haven’t had to deal with making other desserts. You will need a set of 6 Ounce Porcelain Ramekins
Adapted from Pumpkin Creme Brulee by Table for Two Blog
- 2 C heavy cream
- 2 bags of chai tea (I used Tazo Chai)
- 1 t vanilla extract
- 1 C pumpkin (not pumpkin pie mix)
- ½ C packed brown sugar
- 5 egg yolks
- White sugar for the topping
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees
- Heat the cream in a double boiler until the cream starts to bubble around the edges
- Remove the top bowl from the heat and add tea bags. Keep the bottom pot of the double boiler boiling
- Allow the cream and tea to steep for 5-10 minutes
- Set up your ramekins. I put a clean washcloth towel in the bottom of a 9*13 pan to keep them from sliding
- Whisk together the pumpkin, vanilla, brown sugar and egg yolks. I find it easiest to do this in a Pyrex 8 Cup Glass Measuring Cup, the spout makes pouring much easier.
- Slowly add the hot cream, whisking constantly
- Evenly fill the ramekins with the cream/pumpkin mixture, pull out the oven rack and place the pan on it.
- CAREFULLY pour the boiling water from your double boiler in the pan surrounding the ramekins. If you need more water add hot water from the tap. You really don't want to be moving the pan around will of boiling water if you can avoid it!
- Loosely cover with foil, push in the rack and close the oven.
- Check after 30-40 minutes to see if the custard has set. They are done when the edges are set
- Remove from the water bath and allow to cool on a wire rack
- Move to the fridge for at least 4 hours or over night
- Just before serving add a spoonful of sugar to a ramekin and gently shake it around until the entire surface is covered. Pout the excess sugar to on the the next ramekin
- Torch the sugar until melted and starting to brown but don't let it burn