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Photo: Ellen Silverman; Styling: Toni Brogan Photo by: Photo: Ellen Silverman; Styling: Toni Brogan

Cardamom-Coconut Crème Caramel

A prime make-ahead option, these delicately flavored custards make a light finish to a hearty Thanksgiving feast.

Cooking Light NOVEMBER 2009

  • Yield: 8 servings (serving size: 1 custard)


  • Cooking spray
  • 1 cup sugar, divided
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 2 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups flaked sweetened coconut
  • 3 green cardamom pods
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten


1. Lightly coat 8 (6-ounce) custard cups or ramekins with cooking spray. Combine 1/2 cup sugar and 3 tablespoons water in a small saucepan over medium-high heat; cook 2 minutes or until sugar dissolves, stirring gently as needed to dissolve sugar evenly. Cook an additional 4 minutes or until golden (do not stir). Immediately pour into prepared ramekins, tipping quickly to coat bottoms of cups.

2. Preheat oven to 300°.

3. Heat milk, coconut, and cardamom over medium-high heat in a medium, heavy saucepan to 180° or until tiny bubbles form around edge (do not boil). Remove from heat; cover and let stand 15 minutes. Strain the milk mixture through a cheesecloth-lined sieve into a medium bowl. Gather edges of cheesecloth together; squeeze over bowl to release moisture. Discard solids.

4. Combine remaining 1/2 cup sugar, half-and-half, salt, and eggs in a large bowl; gradually add milk mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. Divide mixture evenly among prepared custard cups. Place in a roasting pan; add hot water to pan to a depth of 1 inch. Bake at 300° for 25 minutes or until center barely moves when ramekin is touched. Cool completely in water. Place plastic wrap on the surface of the custards; chill at least 6 hours. Loosen edges of custards. Invert the custard cups onto plates. Drizzle any remaining caramelized syrup over custards.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 213
  • Fat: 8.2g
  • Saturated fat: 4.3g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 1.5g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 0.5g
  • Protein: 6g
  • Carbohydrate: 29.7g
  • Fiber: 0.1g
  • Cholesterol: 123mg
  • Iron: 0.5mg
  • Sodium: 133mg
  • Calcium: 114mg

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Cardamom-Coconut Crème Caramel Recipe