Pudding, Pot de Creme, Pudding, Pot de Creme, Pudding…? Pot de Creme! I pick Pot de Creme!
If Pot de Creme was created in a 17th C. french kitchen, it took Americans two centuries to figure out what to do with all those egg whites: Angel Food Cake. And if you made Angel Food Cake last week, you had yolks for this special baked custard.
I get a lot of pleasure serving Pot de Creme in tea cups Auntie Helen collected during travel abroad. Sarah brilliantly suggested mixing the cups and saucers. Today I chose to use “Perfect Tumblers designed by Helen Levi. Dori found them at the very cool Half Hitch – dare you to leave the site without a wish list. Using 6 of Helen’s ceramic cups meant having enough creme “batter” left over for 6 mini-pots, err… ramekins. Sometimes all we want and need is a taste, plus tiny servings can arranged as part of an individual dessert sampler.
Chocolate Pot de Creme – Serves 6-12 depending on who’s walked around the block twice
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup whole milk
5 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
6 large egg yolks
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon GF vanilla extract
1-2 pinches salt (“pinches” – don’t grab the 1/8 teaspoon measure)
1. Preheat the oven to 325 F. Have ready 6-12 (ramekins) and a baking dish deep enough for a water bath half way up the sides of the pots.
2. In a heavy sauce pan heat the cream and milk to simmering. Remove from the heat and add the chopped chocolate. Whisk until the chocolate is completely melted. Set aside
3. In a small bowl whisk the egg yolks until light in color. Add the sugar, vanilla, and salt and whisk again until creamy.
4. Whisk 1/4 cup of the chocolate mixture into the egg mixture until smooth. Pour that back into the chocolate cream mixture, again whisking until smooth. Strain the “batter” into a heat proof pitcher and cool for 10 minutes.
5. Pour the batter into individual cups/ramekins placed in a deep baking pan. Pour warm water into the pan deep enough to measure at half the cups’ height.
6. Transfer carefully to the oven and bake at 325: 25 minutes for small ramekins and up to 55 minutes for 6 large portions. The custard should jiggle slightly at the center, but otherwise be set. Remove from the water bath and remove the foil. Cool to room temperature before chilling for 2-3 hours. Cover when chilled for up to 2 days.
Serve with unsweetened whipped cream flavored with espresso and/or vanilla extract.