Rosy rhubarb basis for lovely creme brulee

Hidden beneath the brown sugar-crusted custard is tart, rosy rhubarb puree, an excellent twist on a French classic dessert.

Rhubarb is the basis for this sensational creme brule.

Hidden beneath the brown sugar-crusted custard is tart, rosy rhubarb puree, an excellent twist on a French classic dessert.

Rhubarb Creme Brulee

500 ml (2 cups) chopped rhubarb pieces (chopped into 2.5-cm/1-inch lengths)

75 ml (1/3 cup) granulated sugar

45 ml (3 tbsp) light brown sugar

30 ml (2 tbsp) water

Custard

500 ml (2 cups) whipping cream

5 egg yolks

2 eggs

125 ml (1/2 cup) granulated sugar

5 ml (1 tsp) vanilla

50 ml (1/4 cup) light brown sugar

In a small saucepan, combine rhubarb, granulated sugar, brown sugar and water; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until thickened and rhubarb is softened. Let cool.

Custard: In a saucepan, heat cream to almost simmering (until hot to touch). In a bowl, stir together egg yolks, eggs and granulated sugar just until blended; gradually stir in hot cream. Strain through fine sieve into a heatproof bowl or large measure. Stir in vanilla.

Divide rhubarb puree evenly among six 175-ml (6-oz) ramekins or custard cups. Carefully spoon custard mixture over rhubarb. Place ramekins in a roasting pan large enough to hold them without touching. Pour in enough hot tap water to come halfway up sides of custard cups.. Carefully place pan in 150 C (300 F) oven.

Bake until custard sets but still quivers when gently shaken, about 1 hour. Carefully remove cups from water bath; let cool to room temperature. Cover each ramekin tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 6 hours or up to 2 days.

To serve: Gently blot any liquid that has formed on surface of custards with paper towels. Sprinkle 10 ml (2 tsp) brown sugar evenly over top of each. Transfer cups to a baking sheet. Broil as close as possible to heat source until sugar melts and caramelizes, about 2 minutes. Let stand until sugar hardens. (Desserts may be refrigerated for up to 1 hour after broiling.)

Makes 6 servings.

Nutritional information per serving: 485 calories, 6 g protein, 31 g fat, 47 g carbohydrates.

Source: Foodland Ontario.

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