I have a real thing for crème brûlée and fruit in season. Add one to the other, with a little honey, and you've got my kind of dessert. If you're making some, please call and I'll be over with my spoon and some tea to share with you.
Easy and cheap to make, there are few things more pleasurable than crashing a spoon through the caramelised sugar on top.
In this recipe, I switched out half the cream for sour cream just for fun, and it worked beautifully with the tart rhubarb.
1 tbsp honey (I used Kentish Honey)
500ml/18fl oz double cream (I used half normal, half sour cream)
1 vanilla pod
100g/4oz caster sugar (plus extra for the topping)
6 free-range egg yolks
Method for Rhubarb Base
1. Heat your rhubarb in a heavy saucepan with the lid on for twenty minutes
2. Stir through a tablespoon of honey to taste
3. Strain and allow flesh to cool
4. Spoon flesh into ramekins, cover and refrigerate until needed
5. Dilute surplus juice with soda water and ice and drink
Method for Crème Brûlée
1. Preheat the oven to 150C/300F/Gas 2.
2. Pour the cream into a saucepan. Split the vanilla pod lengthways and scrape the seeds into the cream.
3. Chop the empty pod into small pieces, and add them to the cream.
4. Bring the cream to boiling point, then reduce the heat and simmer gently for five minutes.
5. Meanwhile, in a separate bowl, beat the sugar and egg yolks together in a large heatproof bowl until pale and fluffy.
6. Bring the cream back to boiling point. Pour it over the egg mixture, whisking continuously until thickened - this indicates that the eggs have begun to cook slightly.
7. Strain the mixture through a fine sieve into a large jug, and then use this to fill six ramekins to about two-thirds full.
8. Place the ramekins into a large roasting tray and pour in enough hot water to come halfway up their outsides. (This is called a bain-marie.)
9. Place the bain-marie onto the centre shelf of the oven and bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the custards are just set but still a bit wobbly in the middle.
10. Remove the ramekins from the water and set aside to cool to room temperature. Chill until needed.
11. When ready to serve, sprinkle one level teaspoon of caster sugar evenly over the surface of each crème brûlée, then caramelise with a chefs' blow-torch.
12. Set aside to cool for a couple of minutes, then serve.
(Basic Crème Brûlée from BBC Good Food)