|Orange Caramel Custard|
The trickiest part in making this dessert is the caramel. Take it off the flame a little sooner and you will have a sugar syrup. Take it off a little late and you will have a burnt mess. If you have not made caramel before, do not expect to get it right the first time or even the second. If you can get it right the third time, Congratulations. It took me six attempts to get the right consistency. The good thing though is that since there are just two ingredients involved, water and sugar, at least your practice sessions won't burn a hole in your pocket.
You can replace the orange with lemon or you can leave the fruit altogether. That would taste lovely too.
Makes 2 Orange Caramel Custards
For the Custard
170 ml full fat milk
1 teaspoon orange zest
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
35 grams caster sugar
1 large egg
1 egg yolk
For the Caramel
25 grams caster sugar
1 tablespoon+1 teaspoon water
few drops of orange juice
Pour the milk into a saucepan and add the orange zest and vanilla extract.
Bring to a boil, then remove from the heat and stir in the 35 grams caster. Leave to stand for 30 minutes to infuse.
Lightly grease two ramekin molds.
Meanwhile to prepare the caramel, put the remaining sugar and water in a separate saucepan over a medium flame. Ensure that pan is of heavy quality and is not too large for the sugar solution. The solution should come up a little to the sides as well and not just touch the base of the pan.
Stir until the sugar dissolves, reduce the flame and let it come to a boil without stirring it. The solution will start turning brown in about 5 mins maybe from just one small end of the pan. If this happens, give the pan a little swirl but do not stir it. At this stage, do not let your eyes off the pan even for a second since sugar tends to burn pretty quickly.
Once the solution is on the verge of turning amber brown, switch off the flame and squeeze in few drops of orange juice to prevent the caramel from cooking further. Working pretty quickly, pour the caramel into the greased ramekins. Swirl to cover the base and set aside. If the caramel is too thick to get swirled, I am afraid you will have to start over. This happens if you do not work quickly once the caramel is ready.
Preheat the oven to 160 degrees C. In a separate pan, keep some water over a flame to boil.
When the milk has infused, return the saucepan to the heat and bring to simmer.
Beat the egg and the egg yolk together in a bowl. Pour the warm milk into the eggs stirring constantly. Strain the milk mixture into the prepared ramekins.
Keep the ramekins in a roasting pan and pour in boiling water into the roasting pan till it reaches about halfway up the ramekins. Update: I apologize since I forgot to mention that the ramekins need to be loosely covered with a foil while baking. This prevents formation of skin on the custard.
Bake for about 20 mins or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
Remove the ramekins from the roasting dish and keep them on a wire rack to cool completely. Cover the ramekins with foil and chill in the refrigerator for at least 5 to 6 hours or preferably overnight.
When ready to serve, take out the ramekins out of the fridge and immediately run a spatula around the sides of the ramekin, then invert onto a serving plate, shaking firmly to release.
Spoon out the custard, covered in the caramel syrup from across the plate and Enjoy.