5.29.2008

The Beckoning Blackberry:
Vanilla Blackberry Creme Brulee with a Blackberry Shiraz Coulis
When I made the meringue frosting for the red velvet cupcakes last week I used only egg whites leaving me with these egg yolks. For me, leftover egg yolks scream, "CREME BRULEE!" YES!
Creme brulee is one of my ultimate favorites. I have made Vanilla many times, Chocolate, and coconut-lime.
Vanilla has always been the best but, last night when I cracked into the "Beckoning Blackberry", Vanilla was almost bumped to second best. Yikes!

I called this project "beckoning" because the blackberries were so beckoning( to be obvious). I was so intrigued by the deep black-purpley berries. Pomegranate does the same, it's their colors. They are so tart and just so vibrantly rich with color that you are beckoned by the sirens of their greek tragedy-all the sudden finding yourself on a a boat in the seas of blackberrry coulis that Odysseus once sailed through. Hahaha.

The Reviews:
I Loved it. It is super rich though so you can't eat too much. The brulee and the coulis were a perfect balance.
Seanie:Thought it was ok...and really liked the blackberry coulis. Still, he likes vanilla waaay better than any other flavors I have made.
Girdy: "UMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM
UMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM
IT SURE IS GOOD - One word ----------- Delicious"
The Genius: "Does that coulis have alcohol??
Anyways, the brulee is really nice and smooth, and sweet, but not overpoweringly sweet, which is great. And when you pour the coulis into the brulee, its adds a refreshing touch."

Anyway.......Here's how to make them.....

Pure Blackberry Juice:
One bag thawed frozen blackberries (I got mine from Trader Joes)
Put berries in a sieve and squeeze all juice out of them leaving the pulp and seeds behind
Will most-likely produce a little under 1 cup of juice.
Use in recipes below accordingly. :)


Vanilla Bean Blackberry Creme Brulee:
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 a vanilla bean split
4 tablespooons pure blackberry juice + 2 tablespoons extra
2 tablespoons vanilla extract
5 egg yolks
1/4 cup granulated sugar

Preheat an oven to 300°
Boil a pot of water to have on hand
Slice the vanilla bean lengthwise down the middle and scrape the seeds into a 2-quart saucepan Add the heavy cream and whisk to mix vanilla beans
Let simmer over medium-low heat until bubbles form around the edges and steam rises
Whisk in blackberry juice and vanilla extract
Remove the saucepan from the heat and let steep for 10 minutes
In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the egg yolks and sugar until smooth
Gradually add the cream to the egg mixture and mix well with whisk
Pour the custard through a fine-mesh sieve set over a bowl
Place the remekins in a baking pan lined with a kitchen towel.
Divide the custard among ramekins then drip small amounts of blackberry dots in the remekins. To create cool designs use toothpick to swirl drops in the custard.
Place pan with remekins on oven wrack that has been pulled out a little and then slowly add boiling water to fill the pan halfway up the sides of the ramekins.
Cover the pan loosely with aluminum foil
Bake until the custard is just set around the edges about 30-40 minutes
Place ramekins on a cooling rack and let cool to room temperature.
Cover with plastic wrap and chill at least 5 hours.
When ready to serve: sprinkle about 1 tablespoon granulated sugar on top of the chilled custard and caramelize the sugar on top with a culinary torch or the oven broiler.


Blackberry Shiraz Coulis:
3/4 cup pure blackberry juice
1/4 cup Shiraz(I used Charles Shaw 1.99 @ Trader Joes-love it!)
4 tablespoons cup Powdered Sugar or "to taste"
2 teaspoons lime juice

Whisk all ingredients together. I tried to thicken mine a little by boiling for 5-10 minutes with 1/4 cup granulated sugar. Didn't work so much.
Chill and serve with creme brulee

My baby "Beckoning Blackberry" I served the creme brulee with the coulis on the side. Once I had broken into the caramelized sugar layer and eaten a bite of custard, I poured a little of the coulis inside the brulee and continued on eating the custard, coulis and crunchy sugar in perfect bites.
The creme brulee and coulis go really well together because the creme brulee is very light in flavor and smooth and then you have the coulis which is a blasting burst of great flavor. (p.s. it's funny because I wrote this before getting numer four's review. If you go back and read it, they are so similiar.)

I wanted to and should have planned better so I could have the custard slip out of it's remekin onto a plate, then drizzle it with the coulis and then caramelized the sugar on top. That would have been a little better for eating purposes. Oh well.

THE END!

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