I thought for valentines I would try something different – blood oranges are in season about now and with their amazing red colour are perfect for valentines.
Four to six people
- 600ml double cream
- 4 large egg yolks
- 50g caster sugar
- 1 vanilla pod, seeds scraped
- 3 strips of carefully pared orange zest
- 4-6 tsp demerara sugar
Caramelised blood oranges
- 7 blood oranges
- 60g caster sugar
- 6 tbsp water
- Pre-heat your oven to 130c fan.
- Heat the cream, the vanilla pod, seeds and strips of orange zest in a saucepan until almost boiling. Leave the cream to infuse for 5 minutes.
- In a separate bowl whisk the egg yolks and sugar together, once the cream has had its time to infuse slowly pour it into the egg yolks whisking all the time. Strain the mixture though a sieve into a jug, discard the pod and the strips of orange zest. Carefully pour the custard into your dishes, my ramekins were very generous so I only got 4 portions. If you are using slightly smaller ones you’ll get about 6 servings or alternatively you could even use one large dish for a family size creme brûlée, but remember it’ll alter the cooking time.
- Place your ramekins into a baking tray in your oven and careful pour boiling water into the baking tray until it comes halfway up the sides of your ramekins. Make sure no water gets into your custards or they will be ruined. Bake for about 25 - 30 miniutes depending on what size dishes you use, keep checking on them. You want to take them out when they still have a slight wobble in the centre. Carefully remove the baking tray from the oven and lift out your ramekins and leave to cool completely.
- Once cool chill them in the fridge until needed, you can do up to this stage the day before if you like.
- Next, to make your caramelised oranges, take 4 of your oranges and cut the top and bottom off, then carefully slice the rind off all the way down each side so you are just left with the orange flesh. Cut the oranges into rounds about 1cm thick. Place the orange slices in a dish ready for the caramel. Place the caster sugar and the water in a saucepan on a medium heat, let it bubble away until you have a golden caramel, remove the pan from the heat. Juice the remaining 3 oranges and pour the juice into the caramel, it will seize slightly so put it back on the heat until the caramel has dissolved into the juice and the mixture has become syrupy. Pour the orange syrup over the orange slices ready for serving.
- Next finish off your cream brûlée with 1 tsp of Demerara sugar on top of each one, either use a blowtorch to caramelise the topping or put on a high shelf under a very hot grill, again keep a close eye, they can burn very quickly. Pop your creme brûlées back in the fridge for about half an hour before serving if you grilled, they may need to chill down again.
- Serve with your caramelised oranges on the side.