Orange Cardamom Creme Brûlée with Pomegranate

Creme Brûlée is one of those desserts that you can make at home very easily, but looks so decadent- so it’s great for dinner parties, or circumstances where you’re wanting to highly impress your guest.  We flavored ours with orange zest, cardamom, and vanilla bean for a warming flavor, but you can swap out those ingredients for any flavor combination you may prefer!

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So we’re first going to start out by creating our “milk base”.  Add your almond milk, sugar, chickpea flour, cornstarch, salt, vanilla beans & seed scrapings, orange zest, and cardamom into a large pot over medium heat and bring to a low boil.  You don’t want this to be a roaring boil, as you may burn the milk which will give a bitter taste to your final dish.  Continually stir this mixture as it cooks as well to prevent it burning on the bottom of the pot.  You’ll need to boil this mixture for at least two minutes so that the flour and cornstarch are cooked properly and wont leave any bitter taste.  Once your mixture has thickened, you can set it aside to cool for about 10 minutes.  While this is heating up, place your cashews in a pot of boiling water (or soak them overnight) for about thirty minutes to soften them, then drain them & add to a high powered blender with a little water (fresh water not the water you used to boil or soak them) until it turns into a puree. Once your milk mixture has cooled, remove the vanilla beans, and add the milk mixture into the blender with your cashew puree.  Blend together until completely smooth.

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Once your mixture has been blended smooth, transfer them into ramekins, and place in the fridge for three to four hours.  I know, you’re thinking that sounds like a long time, but this is a great do ahead recipe!  You can make the custard base the night before, place them in the fridge overnight, and then when it comes time for dessert at your dinner party, all you’ll have to do is caramelize the top- which is always fun for party guests to watch.

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When it comes time for you to serve your dessert.  Take the ramekins out of the fridge and allow them to come to room temperature (about an hour).  You’ll need a torch to caramelize the sugars on top, but you can find them at most grocery stores nowadays and they are fairly inexpensive.  Pour a spoonful of sugar overtop each ramekin, and gently tap your ramekin around in a circular motion to evenly disperse the sugar.  Hold your torch 2-3 inches away from the sugar, and move continuously in circles until the sugar caramelizes on top.  Make sure to not keep your torch still at any moment as it will burn the sugar, always keep it moving!  Once you’ve bruleed all of your ramekins, top with fresh pomegranate & serve!

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INGREDIENTS

  • 2 cups cashews
  • 1 cup water
  • 4 cups almond milk
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup + 4 tbs chickpea flour
  • 3 tbs cornstarch
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 4 vanilla beans split and scraped
  • 3 tbs orange zest
  • 3 tbs ground cardamom
  • 5-6 tbs granulated sugar for the top
  • pomegranate seeds

DIRECTIONS

  1. Place cashews in water and boil for 30 minutes to soften, drain once finished.  Add to a blender with water and puree until smooth. 
  2. In a medium saucepan, stir together almond milk, 1 cup sugar, chickpea flour, cornstarch, salt, orange zest, cardamom, and vanilla beans / pulp.  Heat over medium heat, stirring constantly.  Bring to a low boil.  At this point the milk mixture will start to become thick.  Continue stirring and allow the milk to boil for two minutes.  This ensures the chickpea flour and cornstarch are cooked through.  Remove from heat and let cool for ten minutes. 
  3. Once the mixture has slightly cooled, remove vanilla beans & add the thick milk mixture to the cashews, and blend until completely smooth. 
  4. Pour into ramekins, cover with tin foil, and put in the fridge until chilled all the way through, 3-4 hours. 
  5. Just before serving, add about a 1/2 tbs of sugar evenly on each ramekin.  Using a torch, melt the sugar so that it begins to bubble and turn golden. 
  6. Top with pomegranate seeds. 

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