Earl Grey Creme Brûlée Tartlets

20140130-221824.jpgor you could call it creme brûlée pie. But i really think that it should be called tartlets. I love earl grey tea because it got a very distinctive aroma that just soothes me. Love it! Anyway about this recipe, this is just a regular creme brûlée with earl grey infused cream. Actually i just bought a new blow torch and i just have to try it out. What better way to try a blow torch than creme brûlée? But then.. Regular creme brûlée are just too mainstream. So does those stuff with passion fruit or strawberry. Why not a tea flavored creme brulee.. Bake it in a shortcrust pastry? Boom! Earl grey creme brûlée tartlets.

First thing first is the shortcrust pastry.

Shortcrust pastry ingredients:

20140206-195533.jpgcold earl grey tea (just use cold water. I was thinking about infusing more tea flavor on the tartlets but then i just remember that in shortcrust pastry, you can’t use lots of water as it will form the gluten from the flour causing it to make a tough pie shell), flour, butter, sugar+salt.

Note: be sure that your shortcrust pastry ingredients are cold (put the flour in the fridge too beforehand) and you want to work your dough fast.

20140206-210812.jpgincorporate the flour, sugar and salt on a working surface

20140206-212533.jpgmix them up and make a well in the middle

20140207-125355.jpgcombine the butter and the ice cold water

20140207-132646.jpgtime to get my hands dirty

20140208-183534.jpgmix and knead the dough just until combine.

Note: you want to knead it as fast as you could so that the heat from your hands won’t melt the butter too much.

20140208-183813.jpgonce done, put the dough in the fridge for at least an hour

20140208-184019.jpgput the dough on a floured surface

20140208-184225.jpgroll the dough. Remember to flour the rolling pin too!

20140208-184552.jpgroll it until about 1 cm thick

20140208-184826.jpgput the dough on the greased and floured pan

20140208-185613.jpgfit them in the pan and put it in the fridge for about 30 minutes to minimize shrinking

20140208-185814.jpgi’ve made some smaller ones too

20140208-235543.jpgline them with parchment paper or aluminum foil and put some weight on it like rice/beans/rocks, etc and bake

To make the creme brulee, first thing first is infusing the earl grey tea with the cream

20140209-185412.jpg i use lipton earl grey tea but i found its flavor is not as strong as i want it to be. I recommend using a better quality tea. Just pour the tea leaves into the cream and let it sit in the refrigerator overnight. I leave my tea for 3 nights in the fridge because after the day i infused my tea, i haven’t got the time to bake until 3 days later. If you want that white creamy signature color of creme brûlée, just leave it overnight.

Creme brûlée ingredients:

20140209-000344.jpginfused cream, egg yolks+egg, sugar, milk

20140209-192214.jpgincorporate the milk and cream then heat it to a simmer

20140209-193735.jpgbeat the egg and egg yolks with sugar

20140210-153237.jpgpour the heated cream and milk to the egg mixture whisking constantly so it won’t curdle

20140210-221906.jpgstrain the mixture to get a smooth and lump-free creme brulee

20140210-222201.jpgpour the mixture to the pie shell and bake. Creme brulee usually uses bain-marie or water bath to cook. Creme brulee cannot be cook in a high temperature oven. What the water bath does is to keep the temperature of your oven nice and subtle so it won’t break the creme brulee. For this, as you can see in the previous picture, i use a wire rack to bake my tartlets and i actually put a pan full of hot water on the rack below the wire rack in the oven.

When done, take it out and refrigerate.

Once chilled, sprinkle a thin layer of sugar and use a blowtorch to caramelize it.

Shortcrust pastry ingredients:
• 1¼ cups flour (preferably cake flour but all purpose is fine too)
• 3 tbsp sugar
• 1/2 cup/1 stick unsalted butter (cut into small squares)
• 3-5 tbsp ice water
• ¼ tsp salt
How to make the tart shell:
*Use cold butter, water, and flour. Remember to work on a cool surface too.
1. Mix the flour, sugar, salt on the working surface (or if you choose to do it in a bowl), make a well in the middle and put in the butter, and water (use 3 tablespoon of water first, if you feel like it’s too dry then add the more) and mix well. Knead the dough just until it’s incorporated. It’s ok if you see any lumps of butter. Put in the fridge for about 1 hour.
2. Roll the dough on a floured surface with a floured rolling pin until it’s about 1cm thick or half an inch and fit it to your floured tartlets pan. Put in the fridge to minimize shrinking and line the tin with parchment paper/aluminium foil and use beans/rice/rocks to add weight to the tartlets.
3. Bake at 350°F or 180°C for about 20-25 minutes.
4. Take it out and let it cool.
Crème brulee ingredients:
• 1 cup cream
• 3 bag/1-2 tbsp earl grey tea
• ½ cup milk
• 3 egg yolk
• 1 whole egg
• 5 tbsp sugar
• 1/8 tsp salt
How to make the crème brulee:
1. Infuse the cream with the earl grey tea leaves by simply soaking the tea leaves in the cream and store in the fridge overnight or more.
2. Heat the milk and the infused cream over medium heat until it come to a simmer.
3. Beat the egg and the yolks with the sugar and salt.
4. Pour in the heated milk and cream to the egg mixture stirring constantly so it won’t curdle.
5. Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve a couple of time and pour it to a pyrex glass or anything that will help you to pour the mixture to the tart shell.
6. Bake the tartlets on a wire rack and put a pan of hot water just below the wire rack where you bake your crème brulee. Bake at 350°F or 180°C for 30 minutes.
7. Take out, let it sit in the fridge until chill (about 1 hour if you make small ones like me) and then sprinkle a thin layer of sugar then caramelize it with a blowtorch.

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Oreo and Dulche de Luche Mille Crepe Cake

20140112-114915.jpg
Mille crepe cake is basically just stacked crepes with cream in between. Here, i’m using just basic crepe recipe that is not cook until crispy but somewhere in between when they start to brown but not crisp yet, i’m using pastry cream with oreo bits on it, and homemade dulche de luche. Yumm.
I made this cake for my best friend’s birthday. She specially ask for an oreo flavored cake but she said it just a day before her birthday. After thinking about what to make in such short time and insufficient ingredient, i decided i should just make a mille crepe cake. It’s easy and quite simple. And you don’t need any great piping or frosting technique (which i’m really bad at) to make this cake.

So let’s get started!
I’m making the dulche de luche the night before because it takes quite some time for the milk to caramelize. The ingredient is just condense milk.
Make two holes on the milk tin, then put the can over boiling water. Boil for about 4-5 hour adding more water when the water evaporates.

20140112-120319.jpgIt took about 5 hour for mine to caramelize the way i wanted it to be (maybe a little more browner would be good but i’m getting really impatient).

My dulche de luche

20140112-120705.jpgPut in a jar and refrigerate it overnight.

Pastry cream ingredient:

20140112-121139.jpgCorn flour, milk, egg yolks, sugar, butter, salt and oreo

Heat the milk with half of the sugar and salt.

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In a bowl, whisk egg yolk, the remaining sugar, and corn flour.

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Whisk until the color assemble lemon curd color.

20140112-121856.jpgPour the heated milk while whisking so the eggs won’t curdle.

20140112-123158.jpgWhisk, and then heat it on medium heat continuously stirring until it gets really thick.

20140112-222448.jpgthis part is optional, i just separate a couple of oreo from the cream and the biscuit to put in the middle of the cake later (so there won’t be too much hump from the oreo when i layer the cake) but if you don’t wanna do it, it doesn’t make much difference.

20140112-223018.jpgnext, put the butter and the oreo cream (this is not needed necessarily but hey, rather than it goes to waste right?) into the hot pastry cream and whisk away.

20140112-223302.jpgPut in the refrigerator and cover with cling fling right on top of the pastry so it won’t form a skin.

Crepe ingredient:

20140112-223916.jpgMilk, butter, sugar+salt, eggs, flour, water.
Combine the sugar+salt, and flour in a bowl and whisk.

20140112-224505.jpgMake a well in the middle.

20140112-224659.jpg Put in eggs, milk, water, and melted butter.

20140112-224816.jpg

20140112-224921.jpg mix them up and we’re ready to cook the crepe.
My trusty crepe pan.

20140112-225259.jpgif you don’t own a crepe pan, you could just use a usual flat bottomed pan and spread the crepe batter as thinly as you could. Make sure it’s non stick so your crepe won’t tear easily.
The batter should have quite a thick consistency.

20140112-225835.jpgmake crepe but don’t cook it until it’s crispy.

20140112-230340.jpg Make until you got 20 crepe ( i only use about 15 of it but i made some more just in case it tear when i layer my cake). Let them cool a bit before you start assembling the cake.
Beat the dulche de luche with butter and then refrigerate (i forgot to take a picture of it)

Take out your pastry cream, separate about one spoon full of cream with your spatula and add crush oreo to the pastry cream with the bigger portion then mix with spatula.

20140113-142706.jpgI just love to see that creamy cream, here’s a bigger picture of it.

20140113-142834.jpgI seriously could just eat it right up.

Well now, it’s assembling time.
Take out you crepe, dulce de luche buttercream and oreo pastry cream.
First, the crepe of course.

20140113-143123.jpgThe oreo cream. Don’t spread the cream too thick. Anyway sorry for my messiness.

20140113-144301.jpgdo it until it’s about the fifth layer.

20140113-144904.jpgi use my dulche de luche buttercream on the fifth layer.

20140113-145120.jpg i put my oreo cookie (the one that i’ve separated the cream and the biscuit one) in the eighth layer.

20140113-145411.jpglayer until your cream had ran out, on the last layer ofcrepe, put your pastry cream that you’ve separated earlier.

20140113-145724.jpgput crushed oreo and drizzle some dulche de luche. Oww yeahh.

20140113-150445.jpg close up

20140113-150922.jpgrefrigerate for at least an hour.

20140113-152641.jpg20140113-152709.jpg

Dulce de Luche recipe
Ingredients:
•1 can of condense milk
How to make:
1. Make two holes on top of the can, then take off the label.
2. Fill a saucepan about ¾ way full with water and let it boil.
3. Put your can of condense milk in the water and let it cook for about 3-4 hours adding water each time the water had evaporates.
4. Take it out, open the can and give a little mix, try to close the lid again and let it sit in the water for about another hour.
5. Put in the jar and refrigerate overnight or until cool.

Oreo pastry cream recipe
Ingredients:
• 4 cups milk
• 1 cup sugar
• ¼ teaspoon salt
• 6 large egg yolks
• ¾ cup cornstarch
• 4 tablespoon unsalted butter (cut into little pieces)
• Vanilla essence or vanilla bean (split lengthwise and scrape the seed)
• 1 package of oreo
How to make:
1. Combine half of the sugar, salt, vanilla bean (if using), and milk in a medium saucepan. Heat them until the milk had just come to a simmer.
2. Meanwhile, whisk together egg yolks, cornstarch, and the remaining of the sugar in a mixing bowl.
3. Once the milk had come to a simmer, pour in the milk into the egg mixture slowly while whisking so the eggs won’t curdle. Pour the mixture back into the pan and cook on medium heat whisking constantly until it thickens. It would take about 2 minutes. Remove the vanilla bean if using at this point.
4. While the cream is hot, put your butter (and the oreo cream if you prefer not to just eat it plainly) and whisk until the butter had melt and the mixture cool down a bit.
5. Cover with plastic wrap pressing it directly onto the surface of the pastry cream to prevent the cream from forming a skin and refrigerate for about one hour or until cool.

Crepe recipe
Ingredients:
• 3 cups flour
• 6 tablespoon sugar
• ½ teaspoon salt
• 4 eggs + approximately 2 egg whites (just use the leftover from making the pastry cream)
• 3 cups milk
• ¾ cup water
• 9 tablespoon butter (melted)
How to make:
1. Incorporate the flour, sugar and salt in a bowl with a whisk. Make a well in the middle to put the wet ingredients. Put the eggs + egg whites and milk into the well, mix. Put in the water, mix. Last put in the butter, mix well.
2. Prepare your crepe pan or your non-stick flat bottomed pan. Heat the pan, spread your crepe batter as thinly as your could then let it brown, but not crisp yet. Take it out. Do until you got about 20 crepes or until your batter ran out.
3. Let your crepe cool before assembling

How to make Oreo Mille Crepe Cake
1. Mix 5 tablespoon dulche de luche with 5 tablespoon unsalted butter until creamy.
2. (optional) Separate some oreo cookies with the cream. Separate about a spatula-full of pastry cream for the top of the cake.
3. Add crush oreos to the pastry cream and mix.
4. Put your crepe on your cake board, spread oreo pastry cream over the crepe, do until about the fifth layer, put the dulce de luche buttercream the crepe again. Make some layer lined with oreo cookies that had been separated from the cream (if you did separate it) do all the layer until your pastry cream had all been layered.
5. On the last layer of crepe, put your pastry cream that had no oreo on it and spread it on the top of the crepe, then top it with more crush oreo and drizzle with dulce de luche.
6. Refrigerate for about an hour.