I used to build stained glass windows; before that I made pottery and painted. Now, for some reason, I cook. Any act of creation is equal, no matter the medium. Even when the outcome is uncertain, the process is one of discovery and exploration. At the best times, the self is lost in the simplicity of pure action.
It doesn’t matter what you like to do, the point is to just do it. And then share it. Unlike a painting or a window, food is easy to share. It’s performance art. It’s here and then gone. And, hopefully, the world is a little better for it.
Créme brûlée tart:
- 1/2 quantity of sweet pastry dough (check my “Dough” section for this recipe)
- 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/4 cup whole milk
- 4 egg yolks
- 2 tbsp sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract (or scrape a vanilla bean into the milk)
- extra sugar to glaze
Brush an 8″ shallow fluted tart pan with butter. Line with 1/8″ thick sweet pastry dough and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Blind bake for 10 minutes until the pastry is firm then remove the weights and bake for another 5-10 minutes. Cool on a wire rack and lower the oven temp to 240 degrees.
Pour the cream and milk into a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Add your vanilla bean (unless you are using extract). In a bowl, whisk egg yolks with the sugar. While whisking, slowly add the boiling milk. If you’re using extract, add it now.
Strain the mix into your pastry shell and bake for 45 minutes or until filling is set.
Cool tart completely. Dust evenly with a good layer of sugar (caster or demerara). Use a torch to brown the sugar or cover the crust edges with foil and set under a broiler for a few minutes to brown the sugar.
This tart is not overly sweet so you could even serve it for breakfast. Enjoy!