I am so sorry for tourist people but Crème Brulee and Catalan cream is not the same! If you don’t know Catalan Cream, you are lost! You have to go to Barcelona, or better to Catalonia region in Spain, and try it, for sure! But remember, you have to ask for ‘Crema catalana’.
Or you can visit us at home and taste it. You will die for it!
‘Crema Catalana’ it is similar to crème Brulee, but flavoured with citrus peel and cinnamon, cooked on the stove, instead of in the oven and with the sugar caramelized with a small round hot iron.
Catalan cuisine Crema catalana, the famous yellow cream made with egg yolk, milk and sugar, whose denseness is between a crème pâtissière or ‘natillas’ and a flan; used to stuff a great number of pastries, or to make simple desserts with, for example, fruit, and that is also eaten in a small flat pottery plate, after covering the cream with white crystal sugar and burning it, in order to create a layer of solid sugar that has to be broken with a small spoon before reaching the cream.
In Catalonia, it is a very typical dessert and one of the oldest since recipes from the Middle Ages are known. A dessert that awakens me a lot of childhood memories, watching my mother burn the sugar with the iron shovel, the smell of burnt sugar …
Ingredients (4 pax)
500 ml milk
4 egg yolks
25g cornstarch (corn flour)
75 g sugar
1 cinnamon stick
2 cardamom pods
4 star anise (or 1 c / c anise seeds)
1 c / c grated orange rind
1 c / c lemon
Sugar grated dark, to burn up cream
Preparation of cream:
Put 475 ml of milk in a saucepan with cinnamon, cardamom, anise and two types of zest. Bring boil over medium heat.
Meanwhile, mix the remaining milk with the cornstarch. Vigorously whisk the egg yolks in a bowl with sugar and cornstarch. When the milk comes to a boil, remove from heat and strain over the yolks, stirring well with a wooden spoon or a whisk.
Return to saucepan preparation and simmer, stirring constantly until thickened (not too much, when cooled thicker). Dealing in a container, cover with plastic wrap touching the cream and let cool to room temperature. Reserve in the fridge until serving.
Sprinkle brown sugar over and burn with kitchen torch.
Abbreviations: c / s = tablespoon c / c = teaspoon