by Heather Harris Brady
Salted caramel is one of my favorite flavor combinations and sadly most of the time I’m disappointed because it’s hard to transfer to desserts while keeping the strength. So, 2015 is shaping up to be my quest for the ultimate salted caramel dessert recipe.
This pots de creme is a lovely gentle variation on the theme. I had hopes, because it originated from Curtis Stone, but to me the flavor turned out to be more butterscotch than caramel. It’s still really good though, and it would make a gorgeous make-ahead Valentine’s Day dessert (get out those heart-shaped ramekins!) – especially served with a thin ginger cookie or bit of chopped candied ginger on top.
Salted Butterscotch Pots de Creme, Makes four servings
- 2 T. butter
- 1/2 c. packed light brown sugar
- 1/2 t. salt
- 1 c. heavy cream
- 3 egg yolks
- 1/3 c. whole milk
- 1 t. vanilla
- Flake sea salt for garnish
Preheat the oven to 325. Find a baking dish large enough to fit four ramekins, add about 1/2″ of water and put it in the oven to heat the water.
Combine the butter, salt and brown sugar in a saucepan. Stir over medium for about seven minutes, until it darkens slightly and starts to smell like caramel.
Stir in the heavy cream all at once. The sugar will seize (turn into lumps), so keep the heat on medium low and keep stirring. Eventually the lumps will melt back into the cream.
Stir the egg yolks into the milk, then add about half of the caramel.
Stir it well and whisk it back into the pan.
Divide it among four ramekins. Pull your baking dish of hot water out of the oven and put the ramekins in. Add more water if you need to, but bring it about halfway up the sides of the dishes.
Add a little foil tent over the pan, leaving one small opening to vent. Bake for about 50 minutes, until the centers are still a bit jiggly but the edges are set.
Chill thoroughly. When they’re cool cover them with plastic wrap if you’re making them more than a few hours ahead. Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
To serve add a little sprinkle of sea salt to the center of each dish.
As the dishes cool the creme will set up into a velvety custard.