Vanilla crème brûlée

Vanilla crème brûlée

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  • 6
  • Easy
  • 1 hour, plus 3 hours setting time

" Cracking the caramel layer on top of this creamy dessert with a spoon always delights me. Crème brûlée is ridiculously easy to make, very affordable, but oh so chic! A great dessert but it doesn’t need too much preparation. You can also serve some raspberries on the side." – Manon Lagrève


  • 1 cup full-cream milk
  • 3 cups double cream
  • 40 g vanilla bean paste or 4 vanilla pods, seeds scraped
  • 9 egg yolks (freeze the whites for another recipe)
  • 170 g caster sugar
  • 100 g golden granulated sugar

Cooking Instructions

1. Pour the milk and double cream into a pan. Add the vanilla bean paste or vanilla seeds and pods and bring to a gentle boil. Turn off the heat and leave to cool and infuse for 30 minutes. Remove the pods and pour the mixture through a sieve, if needed.

2. Preheat the oven to 100°C fan (gas ¼).

3. In a glass bowl, quickly whisk the egg yolks with the caster sugar until pale, then slowly pour the warm vanilla milk over the top. Mix well with a spatula.

4. Place the ramekins on a baking tray and divide the vanilla cream among them.

5. Place the tray in the oven, and pour some water into the tray, halfway up the sides of the ramekins, to make a bain marie. Cover the whole tray with tin foil and bake for 45 minutes–1 hour. The crèmes should be a little jiggly and the edges cooked. If your ramekins are tall and thick, you might need to add an extra 30 minutes to the bake.

6. Leave the crèmes to cool down at room temperature, then transfer to the fridge for at least 3 hours or overnight.

7. Sprinkle a thin layer of golden granulated sugar on top of each crème. Caramelise the sugar with a blowtorch, directly burning it to make that satisfying caramel, or put them under a hot grill (broiler) for a couple of minutes for the same effect.

Cook's note: If you have a blow torch, it is quite fun to do the caramelisation of the crême brulée directly on the table and in front of your guests.

Extract reproduced with permission from Et Voilà by Manon Lagrève, published by Welbeck. Photography: Nassima Rothacker. Price: R510

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Manon Lagrève Recipe by: Manon Lagrève
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Manon Lagrève is The Great British Bakeoff (2018) alumni and winner of the NYE 2023 special. She started with a lifestyle blog called Manon's Little Kitchen, which has a focus on achievable, positive and simplistic baking for all abilities, all influenced by her French heritage and her travels.

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