Recipe: Public House Vanilla Bean Crème Brulee

The Vanilla Bean Crème Brulee is a popular item on the Public House dessert menu, offering a rich custard base topped with a delicious layer of hard caramel.

This item as it is known today traces its roots back to 1691 France. That was the year it first appeared in a cookbook. Vanilla beans are usually very aromatic with a full, rich taste. They are great for use in flavoring desserts, beverages, alcohol, sauces and many other recipes.

This is the scaled-down version of the Public House treat for home use, with the instructions below from Dottie May Youells.

  1. Assemble the ingredients:

    • 1 Quart of Heavy Crème
    • 1 Vanilla Bean, (score down the middle and pull the seeds from the pod) opt. 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract.
    • 1 cup of Granulated Sugar
    • 6 Egg Yolks
  2. Combine the heavy crème, vanilla bean (pod and seeds that were removed from the pod) and heat gently in a heavy bottom pan, stirring to avoid scorching the bottom of the pan. Take off heat when small bubbles begin to form around the edges of the pan. Do NOT boil this.

  3. In a separate bowl combine 3/4 cup of granulated sugar and egg yolks, whisking until pale yellow and thoroughly combined.

  4. Gradually add small amounts of warm crème mixture to the egg mixture -- about 1/3 of crème at a time.

  5. Combine well, straining the mixture into a large measuring cup.

  6. Pour the crème mixture into 6-8-ounce ramekins that have been placed in a 13x9 cake pan, filling almost to the top. Ramekins are also known as bouillon bowls.

  7. Place in 250 degree oven, gently pour boiling water around the ramekins making sure to NOT get water into the vessels.

  8. Cook approx. 20 minutes or until the centers remain a wee bit wobbly, but edges appear firm.

  9. Chill several hours or overnight.

  10. Top with granulated sugar leveling, approximately two teaspoons. Torch with blow torch or other similar apparatus until sugar is melted and a golden brown liquid.

  11. Serve immediately.

The Crème Brulee is normally served at room temperature. Please exercise caution anytime you use a torch.

We hope you enjoy re-creating this delicious treat at home. If you don't want to spend your time going through these steps, assembling all of the ingredients, cooking and cleaning up afterward, you can always come to Public House and order our version for $5.

See the rest of the our dessert menu.