Last week, when we were in Maine, my friend, Ralph, gave me a few little gifts. One was the beautiful Italian-made glass measuring cup you can see Julia displaying in this post. Another was the box in the picture above. Yes. A box of chocolate crème brûlée mix. He gave me that because back when he bought himself a little mini torch, he got the one that comes with the box mix, and I laughed and snorted and snickered about it. So this is how he retaliates. By FORCING the box mix upon me.
I torment him; he torments me. This is why we've been friends for so long.
Anyway, a few nights after we returned from our trip, I decided to make this for dessert. And, because I like to share most of my cooking and baking adventures with you here, I figured I'd share this one.
So here we go.
First thing the directions tell you to do is pour a cup of heavy cream and a cup of half & half (or whole milk) in a pot.
Next, add the contents of the chocolate cream brulee packet to the milk. Not sure why they spelled it that way when they spelled it "crème" on the outside of the box. I'm thinking maybe the machine they use to print stuff on those little packets doesn't have an "accent" function. Don't know. But I forged ahead anyway, despite my puzzlement.
The other package – the one that has the "creme brulee caramelizing sugar" in it (hmmm…on this one they spelled it "creme" instead of "cream." Why?) – was not required just yet.
In went the chocolate powder…
And then, still following the directions, I stirred the powder into the milk. And then I brought it to a boil, stirring all the while. Next, I reduced the heat to a simmer and cooked it for another minute. Done.
When it was dessert time, I grabbed the packet of "creme brulee caramelizing sugar" and, per the directions, sprinkled an even layer of the sugar over the crème. Then, with a wild cackle, I got out my little torch and brûléed them.
And then I served them to Bill and the kids. Julia had her spoon in one, just ready to eat, but I yanked her hand away so I could take a picture. She didn't appreciate it, but she's used to my weird behavior.
How were they? They weren't bad at all, really. Not the same as a custard cooked in the stove, in a water bath, of course. They were more like stove-top dark chocolate pudding dressed up in crunchy sugar.
The kids each ate maybe half of theirs. Alex wanted to like it, I think, because it's chocolate, but it's the texture thing that won out. Julia? Not a fan of dark chocolate. Bill and I ate ours without complaint. And okay, I ate the rest of Julia's. THERE, I ADMIT IT.
So thanks, Ralph, for the Brûlée-in-a-Box!