Rich, creamy custard filled with the flavors of the holidays! Spiced with nutmeg and spiked with bourbon, this eggnog creme brulee is pure joy!
Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees. Set 6 ramekins into a baking dish and enough water to fill the dish halfway.
In a large saucepan set over medium heat, bring 1 3/4 cups of the cream to just a simmer. Remove from the heat. Skim the skin off and add remaining 1/4 cup of cold cream and pinch of salt. Mix. Allow to cool for 10 minutes. If using a vanilla bean, steep it in the cream now for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk your eggs and sugar for a minute.
Then using a mesh sieve, strain the cream into a pitcher (or a 4 cup capacity glass measuring pitcher).
Add a tablespoon of the cream to the eggs, and make sure to keep whisking. Do this again. Begin tempering in the cream in a steady stream, whisking the whole time.
Then mix in your spices and extract and optional alcohol.
Use a mesh sieve to pour the eggnog creme brulee mixture into each ramekin. Divide evenly.
Then pout the boiled water into the baking dish so that it fills halfway up the ramekins. Don't get water into the eggnog creme brulee.
Bake for approx. 35 minutes, or until the edges are set and the middle still jiggles. If needed, use a thermometer to check for 170 degrees.
Take out of water bath and allow to cool at room temperature for about 1 hour. Then refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight.
To torch: take out ramekins and allow to be at room temperature for about 20 minutes Then sprinkle about a teaspoon of granulated sugar over each eggnog creme brulee. Torch it safely!
You can make this with or without alcohol. Use: brandy, bourbon, or rum. Or make it with a combo of rum and brandy!
The base of this is a classic vanilla bean crème brulee. You can take out the nutmeg and alcohol to achieve this classic recipe. If you prefer to make one large dish, that is also fine and will yield great results. All you will need to do is check your time and temp. Use a 10 inch tart pan, and bake for approx. 40-45 minutes.