Tip: Getting A Good Caramelized Top On Crème Brûlée

Recently, a friend of ours asked us, What do you think is one of the sexiest foods? Our response: Crème brûlée. We get so much pleasure in cracking that caramelized sugar top to get to the smooth, rich cream beneath it. Some people feel the burnt sugar is the best part. We'll show you in this post how to do it right.To burn the sugar evenly, follow these steps accompanying the photo:
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  1. Add the sugar to the top of the custard.
  2. With one hand, grab both sides of the ramekin and with the bottom of the ramekin still touching your working surface, gently shake it from side to side until the sugar settles into an even surface.
  3. This is what it looks like when you've spread it evenly.
  4. Light your chef's torch and start caramelizing one area until it's lightly browned. Grab a potholder and then rotate the ramekin so you can easily access a non-burned area. Lightly brown that area, and keep working in bits, turning the ramekin until the sugar is evenly browned and has formed a hard shell.

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Voila! This is what you'll end up with - a perfectly browned shell of sugar waiting for a spoon to crack it.

(Images: Kathryn Hill)

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