Macarons have become my nemesis. I did A LOT of reading and research before even attempting the adorable (but daunting) French cookies. After a ridiculous amount of recipe comparison, I settled on the most basic recipe I could find, got my Mise en Place together, and went about making my macarons. I had already excepted the fact that my first batch was going to fail miserably, so when I looked into the oven after five minutes of baking, I was pleasantly surprised with the "feet" beginning to appear. Another five minutes later, the cookies were out of the oven and looking gorgeous...we're talking Pierre Herme beautiful (well, not quite)...needless to say, I was ecstatic. All of macaron fears instantly disappeared, birds sang, and the gods smiled down on me. This was three months ago. Since then, EVERY batch of macarons I've attempted have failed MISERABLY. I had some beginners luck, got cocky, and now I can't make a batch to save my life...its beyond frustrating.
Despite many, MANY failures, I refuse to give up. The only thing I can do at this point is keep trying, and keep comparing recipes and technique until I master them. With all this practice, I've been left with lots of egg yolks, so I decided to make Creme Brulee (a safe dessert I could make with my eyes closed, and NEVER fails me).
I recently purchased some Tasmanian Leatherwood Honey - its thick, opaque, very floral, and (I think) a little musky...I could eat it by the spoonful. Having used it in a couple savory applications, I thought it was about time to try something sweet.
Tasmanian Leatherwood Honey Creme Brulee
6 egg yolks
3 cups of heavy cream (use the freshest you can find)
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3-4 Tbsp Leatherwood Honey (or any other artisan/non artisan honey you have on hand...but keep in mind that the honey is the star of the show...using the best quality available will behoove you)
1/2 of a vanilla bean
- Preheat oven to 350
- Fill a large saucepan with water and bring to a boil
- In a large bowl, whisk together egg yolks, sugar, and honey. Set aside.
- Over medium heat, scald cream and vanilla bean.
- Using a ladle, gradually drizzle the hot cream over the egg yolks, while whisking constantly. Continue ladling until all of the cream has been tempered into the yolks.
- Pour the hot custard into 8 small ramekins- filling the ramekins a little over half way.
- Line a large roasting pan with a dish cloth - this will prevent the ramekins from sliding around in the water bath during transfer.
- Place ramekins on top of the dish cloth in the roasting pan, transfer the pan to center rack of the oven.
- Carefully pour the boiling water into the roasting pan until it reaches half way up the sides of the ramekins.
- Bake f0r 20-40 minutes or until set (Give the pan a little shake, once the centers of the brulees jiggle and don't look like liquid- they're done)
- Chill thoroughly, over night is preferable.
- At service, sprinkle a thin, even layer of turbinado sugar on top of the custards and brulee with a small propane torch. If you don't have access to a torch, heat the back of a spoon over the flame of a burner on your oven, then gently rub the hot spoon over the sugar.