Horchata Creme Brûlee combines the classic French dessert with sweet and milky horchata, resulting in a delicious treat for anyone who loves both.
Sweet and spicy horchata adds a unique twist to traditional creme brulee.
Really love creme brulee? Try my recipe for traditional Vanilla Creme Brulee or try something different like this Chocolate Hazelnut Creme Brulee, this Rhubarb Creme Brulee, this Mango Creme Brulee, this Blueberry Creme Brulee, this Peach Creme Brulee, or this Sweet Corn Creme Brulee.
Get ready to indulge in velvety custard, adorned with a perfectly caramelized sugar crust.
Why You Will Love This Recipe
- Delicious Flavor: The combination of creamy custard and the distinct taste of horchata, often with cinnamon and other spices, creates a delightful and refreshing flavor.
- Texture Contrast: The smooth and creamy custard with the crisp and caramelized sugar topping provides a satisfying contrast in textures.
- Impressive Dessert: Horchata Crème Brûlée is visually appealing, making it an impressive and elegant dessert to serve for special occasions or when entertaining guests.
Horchata: You can use either store-bought or homemade horchata.
Heavy Whipping Cream: Some recipes use a combination of both heavy whipping cream and milk to make the custard lighter. In my opinion, creme brûlée is meant to be rich so this recipe uses only heavy whipping cream.
Tip: If you want to substitute milk for some of the heavy whipping cream I would stick with a 1:1 ratio. Use one cup of heavy whipping cream and one cup of milk.
Egg Yolks: For creme brulee, you want to use just the egg yolks. Egg whites would set too firmly giving the creme brulee a rubbery texture.
If you have never separated eggs before, check out this post from Sugar Hero where she shares Four Methods for Separating Eggs.
Save the egg whites for another recipe. Like this Lemon Swiss Meringue.
Granulated White Sugar: For creme brulee, the best sugar to use is regular granulated white sugar. Its small granules easily melt into the custard perfectly balancing the bitterness of the burnt sugar crust.
Speaking of the crust we will use granulated white sugar for the topping as well. Granulated sugar works best because the granules are small and caramelize quickly, which is important. We don't want the custard to melt while we are brûléeing the sugar.
Another benefit to using white sugar is it is easy to tell when the sugar has caramelized because it will turn from white to a golden brown.
Cinnamon: Horchata is traditionally flavored with cinnamon.
Salt: I add at least a pinch of salt to all of my recipes. Salt complements and intensifies the other flavors. For all of my recipes, I use Morton Kosher Salt which packs more densely than Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt. If you are using Diamond Crystal Kosher Salt you will want to double the amount of salt you add.
See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.
Step by Step Directions
Step 1: Move an oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 325°F (165°C).
In a medium-sized bowl whisk together the egg yolks, sugar, cinnamon, and salt until smooth.
Step 2: Whisk in the heavy cream, horchata, and vanilla.
Tip: Whisk the eggs, sugar, and salt together in a large measuring cup to make pouring the custard into the ramekins easier.
Tip: If you want perfectly smooth creme brulee, use a spoon to skim off any bubbles from the top, or don't worry about it any imperfections will be covered by the burnt sugar crust.
Step 3: Lay a towel across the bottom of the pan and arrange your ramekins on top. The towel will keep the ramekins from sliding around. Pour the custard into the ramekins.
Place the pan in the oven and then pour hot water into the pan, careful not to splash water into the ramekins. The water should come about halfway up the ramekins.
Bake for 20 to 30 minutes until the edges are set but the centers are still slightly jiggly. The baking time will vary depending on the size of your ramekins.
Step 4: Remove the baking dish from the oven and allow the custards to cool for approximately 15 minutes until you can safely pick up the ramekins and remove them from the water. Allow the custards to cool on the counter for an additional 15 minutes.
Cover each ramekin with plastic wrap and chill them in the refrigerator for at least four hours and up to four days.
Step 5: Remove the custards from the refrigerator and evenly sprinkle each custard with 1 teaspoon of granulated sugar.
Step 6: Ignite your torch and hold the flame about 4 inches from the surface of the custard. Using a circular motion heat the sugar until it browns and forms a crust.
Tip: The longer you brulee the sugar, the darker, more caramelized, and bitter it will become. The bitterness contrasts nicely with the sweetness of the custard.
If you want a really thick crust sprinkle a second teaspoon of sugar evenly across each custard and brulee a second time.
For an extra touch of indulgence, you can garnish each custard with a sprinkle of ground cinnamon, fresh berries, and a dollop of whipped cream.
Make-Ahead and Storage Instructions
Make-Ahead: Uncooked custard can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. It can either be stored all together in a storage container or you can divide it into individual ramekins and cover them with plastic wrap.
Storage: Cover the cooked and cooled creme brulees with plastic wrap and refrigerate them for up to four days. Wait to sprinkle with sugar and brulee until just before serving.
Horchata is a traditional drink that is popular in many Latin American and Spanish-speaking countries. It is typically made with a combination of white rice, water, sugar, and various flavorings such as cinnamon or vanilla.
The rice is soaked, ground, and then mixed with water to create a milky beverage. The mixture is sweetened with sugar and often enhanced with spices to add a unique and refreshing flavor.
Horchata is known for its creamy texture and subtly sweet taste, making it a popular choice for cooling down on hot days or enjoying as a refreshing treat.
Yes. Uncooked custard can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. It can either be stored all together in a storage container or you can divide it into individual ramekins and cover them with plastic wrap.
You can also cover the cooked and cooled creme brulees with plastic wrap and refrigerate them for up to 4 days. Wait to brulee the sugar until just before serving.
Straining the custard before pouring it into the ramekins helps remove any lumps or bits that may affect the texture. Also, avoid overcooking the custard to prevent it from becoming grainy.
The most commonly used sugar for the caramelized crust is granulated white sugar. However, you can also use brown sugar or even specialty sugars like demerara or turbinado for a slightly different flavor and texture.
It is generally not recommended to freeze creme brulee, as freezing can affect its texture and result in a watery custard upon thawing. It is best enjoyed fresh or refrigerated for a few days.
- There is no need to purchase a special pan just use whatever you already own. The size of pan you use will depend on the size of the ramekins you have. I have used cake pans, roasting pans, and jelly roll pans.
- Use a water bath: Bake the ramekins in a water bath (bain-marie) to provide gentle and even heat distribution. The water bath helps prevent the custard from overheating and ensures a silky texture.
- Don't rush the cooling process: After baking, allow the creme brulee to cool at room temperature for a while before transferring it to the refrigerator. This gradual cooling helps prevent cracking.
- Chill thoroughly: Make sure to refrigerate the custards for at least a few hours, preferably overnight, to allow them to set and develop their flavors fully.
- Caramelize the sugar just before serving: Sprinkle a thin, even layer of granulated sugar on top of each custard just before serving. Use a kitchen torch to carefully melt and caramelize the sugar, creating the signature crisp and caramelized crust. Alternatively, you can use the broiler, but keep a close eye on it to prevent burning.
- To avoid burning the sugar, don't hold the flame too long over any one place.
- Serve immediately after caramelizing the sugar. If allowed to sit the sugar topping will become soggy instead of crunchy.
More Dessert Recipes
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Horchata Creme Brulee
- 6 large egg yolks
- ½ cup granulated white sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1 cup horchata store-bought or homemade
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- additional granulated white sugar for the caramelized topping
- Move an oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 325°F (165°C).
- In a medium-sized bowl whisk together the 6 large egg yolks, ½ cup granulated white sugar, 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon, and ⅛ teaspoon kosher salt until smooth.
- Whisk in the 1 cup heavy cream, 1 cup horchata , and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract.
- Lay a towel across the bottom of the pan and arrange your ramekins on top. The towel will keep the ramekins from sliding around. Pour the custard into the ramekins.
- Place the pan in the oven. Carefully pour hot water into the pan, ensuring it reaches about halfway up the ramekins. Be cautious not to splash water into the custard.
- Bake for 20 to 30 minutes until the edges are set but the centers are still slightly jiggly. The baking time will vary depending on the size of your ramekins.
- Remove the baking dish from the oven and allow the custards to cool for approximately 15 minutes until you can safely pick up the ramekins and remove them from the water. Allow the custards to cool on the counter for an additional 15 minutes.
- Cover each ramekin with plastic wrap and chill them in the refrigerator for at least four hours and up to four days.
- Remove the custards from the refrigerator and evenly sprinkle each custard with 1 teaspoon of granulated sugar.
- Ignite your torch and hold the flame about 4 inches from the surface of the custard. Using a circular motion heat the sugar until it browns and forms a crust.
- Cooked creme brulee can be covered with plastic wrap and stored in the refrigerator for up to five days.
- Remember to wait to top with and brulee the sugar until just before serving. Otherwise, the sugar crust will become soggy.
- I don't recommend freezing creme brulee. Most likely the custard will separate when it thaws.