Crème Caramel (Caramel Cream), is a French pudding made with cream or milk and eggs, which is baked in the oven. A caramel sauce is placed in the dish before adding the pudding and after it sets it is reversed so that the caramel is on top.
This pudding is very easy to make. The most difficult part, for those who have never made one, is probably making the caramel but if you follow the instructions this is very easy as well.
To make this dessert start by making the caramel. See my video here.
To make the caramel, the amount of granulated sugar needed, is 1 tbsp (about 12 grams) per portion.
Put the sugar in a heavy saucepan or a non-stick frying pan and mix on medium heat and the sugar will soon start melting. To help speed the procedure, before putting it on the heat, add just enough to wet it, so as to resemble like wet sand. I prefer adding lemon juice instead of water, just for its taste.
You have to mix reguarly, scraping the sides of the pan with a spatula, until you see the sugar becoming liquid. Keep mixing and the sugar will become darker and darker. The colour is up to you. When making caramel, I prefer it to become dark amber.
As soon as the caramel is ready, carefully pour it in your oven safe dish or divide it in ramekins.
Crème Caramel is made with heavy cream or a mixture or heavy cream and whole milk, eggs and sugar.
A similar recipe is Flan, which is usually made with condensed milk but this is going to be a recipe I will post in the future.
When I was young we used to buy the ready made package to which you just added milk. There was also some caramel liquid in the package and it took just about 1 minute to cook it on the stove top. However, I haven’t bought anything from a package for decades.
When I learned how to make it from scratch, way before blogging, I saw that the specific recipe I had read, had way too many eggs and heavy cream and sugar, which was good to try once but not a dessert I would make often. Back then, eggs were accused of having high cholesterol, so I made it once and from that day I never made it again.
The other day I had a lot of leftover low fat milk (almost 2 litres and more specifically 8 3/4 cups), which was about to expire, so I kept thinking what dessert to make other than Rice Pudding or Pastry Cream or just a simple pudding, such as Mahalebi.
I decided to make a much lighter Crème caramel, my way. I did not follow any recipe, but what I did was for each cup plus a few tablespoons of milk, I used 1 egg and 1 regular spoon (not measuring spoon) of sugar. I measured the 8 tablespoons sugar and they were 125 grams, which makes it 10 measuring spoons.
If you want a more decadent dessert but with way more calorries, you can substitute milk with cream. However, I can assure you that this dessert is very delicious and light. If you analyze the ingredients you will see that it is only 228 calories per serving. I have not included the caramel syrup as this is up to you how much you want to add on top but a couple of tablespoons will not increase the calories much.
To make the pudding, heat the milk (or cream) until warm. As soon as you see steam coming from the milk or cream, remove it from the heat. If you let the cream boil, it will burn and stick to the pot.
While the milk is heating, using a hand mixer or a whisk, beat the eggs with the sugar and add the flavour. Vanilla is the most common flavour but feel free to experiment with other flavours as well. While whisking add the warm milk gradually to temper the eggs, until all is added. Ladle the egg mixture in the prepared dish or ramekins.
Some people cook the Caramel Cream over a double boiler. I do not. I just put it in the oven and bake it for about 45 – 50 minutes. Do not expect the pudding to set while in the oven. It will be wobbly but it will set when it cools. When it cools refrigerate for at least an hour and then invert the dessert. Be careful as at this stage the caramel is liquid and you may spill it while inverting.
I used a Pyrex which was not big enough for the amount of cream I had made, so I divided the 4 1/2 leftover cups, into 5 ramekins.
The result was a delicious light cream, without all the calories of a regular caramel cream.
Low Fat Crème Caramel
Preparation time: 20 minutes
Baking time: 50 minutes
Serves: 1 Pyrex 17.5 x 25.5 cm and 5 ramekins
For the caramel:
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
For the pudding:
- 8 ¾ cups low fat milk
- 8 tbsp (of soup) or 10 tbsp (125 grams) sugar
- 8 eggs (65 grams each, with shell)
- 1 tsp vanilla essence
- Prepare the caramel and divide it into the Pyrex or ramekins.
- Heat the milk.
- Whisk the eggs with sugar, add vanilla and mix.
- Add the warm milk gradually in the egg mixture and mix.
- Preheat the oven to 170 degrees C (fan forced) or 180C in a regular oven.
- Pour the mixture into the Pyrex or ramekins and bake for 45 – 50 minutes.
- Set aside to cool and refrigerate for a few hours.
- Loosen the edges of the Pyrex or the ramekins and invert.
- Cut the ones baked in the Pyrex into six servings and serve with some caramel syrup on top.
Other relevant recipes:
Kopiaste and Kali Orexi!