Fire_Creme_Brulee_BIG

 

FIRE AT WIND CREEK
PETER D’ANDREA

2 cups half and half
6 egg yolks
1/3 cup sugar plus ¼ cup sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract
½ vanilla bean, cut open lengthwise
9 strawberries, hulled (6 sliced thin, 3 small diced)

To make custards, heat half and half until warm to the touch, 2-3 minutes with the vanilla bean insides as well as vanilla. Remove the bean and scrape the seeds into it. Discard the stick. Beat egg yolks, 1/3 cup sugar and both vanillas in a small bowl. Whisk in warm cream. Split the mix into two. In one, place the diced strawberries; leave the other as is. Fill 3 oven-proof soufflé dishes with each mix. Place in a biking pan and fill hot water to about half way up the cups. Place in a 325 degree oven and bake for 35-45 minutes or until center is soft to the touch. Check at 30 minutes, custard may cook quicker depending on depth of cups. Carefully remove cups from the water and cool. Cover and refrigerate. To serve, slice the other 6 strawberries thinly. Lay them around the top of the 3 strawberry cups. Heat remaining ¼ cup sugar in a small heavy saucepan over medium-high heat, tilting the pan to melt evenly as sugar liquefies. Once sugar is melted, reduce heat to low and cook until light brown. Quickly drizzle 1-2 tsp. over each crème brulee. Serve immediately.