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We love a good creme brulee. If you can you want to use a vanilla bean. The flavor you get is really nice and with a delicate dessert like this you can really taste the bean. I didn’t get the even coloring I would normally like, I had an eager to help toddler wanting to help with the torch part so it was all hands on deck.

Vanilla bean:

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To make sugared blackberries:

Beat an egg white with a splash of water in a bowl.  Dip rinsed and dried berries in egg wash, then roll in sugar.  Place sugared berries on a plate or cookie sheet, separated, and dry for a couple of hours at room temperature.  Use to decorate a dessert, or eat by themselves.

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Crème Brûlée

(Adapted from Saveur)


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1 qt. heavy cream

1 vanilla bean, halved lengthwise, seeds scraped and reserved

¾ cup sugar

8 egg yolks

Turbinado sugar, for serving


Heat oven to 300°. Bring cream and vanilla bean with seeds to a simmer in a 2-qt. saucepan over medium-high heat. Remove from heat and let sit for 30 minutes; discard vanilla bean.


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In a bowl, whisk sugar and yolks until smooth.


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Slowly pour in cream mixture, whisking until smooth; set aside.


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Place a paper towel in the bottom of a 9″ x 13″ baking pan, and place six 6-oz. ramekins inside pan. Divide custard among ramekins.


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Pour boiling water into pan to come halfway up outsides of ramekins. Bake until custards are set but still slightly loose in center, about 35 minutes.


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Transfer ramekins to a wire rack; cool. Chill until firm, at least 4 hours.


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Dab any condensation off surface of custards with a paper towel. Sprinkle turbinado sugar evenly over surface of each custard. Guide the flame of a blowtorch back and forth over surface until sugar caramelizes; let sit briefly until sugar hardens.

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