Creme Catalan or Catalan Cream Recipe
Creme Catalan, Catalan Cream or Crema Catalan is quite alike to creme brullee, a creamy custard with a burnt sugar coated topping which is delicious. The principal difference being is that Creme Catalan is traditionally served in an earthenware dish and flavoured with lemon zest.
500ml double cream (40% fat)
3 egg yolks
100g caster sugar
zest of 1 lemon
1 cinnamon stick
Topping: 4 tablespoons caster sugar
How to make Creme Catalan
For the cream:
Place the 500ml double cream in a saucepan with the lemon zest, cinnamon and sugar and heat. Allow it to simmer for a couple of minutes until all the sugar has dissolved. Remove it from the heat and allow it to cool down.
For the custard:
Take out the cinnamon stick and strain the lemon zest from the cream.
Return the cream to the heat and bring it to a gentle simmer then remove it.
Beat the eggs in a bowl and pour in around 70ml of the cream and mix it well together.
With a wooden spoon stir the egg mixture into the cream in the saucepan.
Place the saucepan on a very low heat and stir the mixture constantly and consistently until it thickens and leaves a heavy coating on the wooden spoon. Don’t make it too hot or you will ruin the mixture and will have to start again.
Afterwards, pour the mixture into four round, shallow earthenware dishes. If you don’t have earthenware dishes, just use four round moulds.
Leave the custard to cool, then cover with cling film and place them in a fridge until chilled.
Sprinkle some caster sugar evenly over the top of each Creme Catalan and use a chef’s blow lamp over the surface to caramelize the sugar. If you don’t have a chef’s blow lamp handy then place them under a hot preheated grill. Cool slightly to allow the surface to caramelize into a crisp crust and serve.
Creme Catalan is a delicious dessert that can be enjoyed anytime of the year.