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Lemon Verbena Crème Brûlée

Photo: Becky Luigart-Stayner; Styling: Julia Rutland
Yield Makes 8 servings

Ingredients

  • 3 1/4 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon verbena leaves
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
  • Pinch of salt
  • 8 large egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar

How to Make It

  1. Place 8 individual (1/2-cup) flan dishes or ramekins in 2-inch-deep baking dish or roasting pan; set aside.

  2. Combine cream and next 4 ingredients in a heavy saucepan. Stir over medium heat 5 minutes or until sugar dissolves and mixture comes to a simmer. Cover pan, reduce heat to low, and simmer gently 10 minutes to infuse flavors.

  3. Whisk yolks in a large bowl until smooth. Strain cream mixture into a large measuring cup. Gradually whisk hot cream mixture into yolks. Pour mixture equally into prepared baking dishes.

  4. Pour enough hot water into roasting pan to reach halfway up sides of ramekins. Carefully place pan in oven. Bake at 325° for 30 to 35 minutes or until custard is almost set in center when pan is gently shaken.

  5. Remove flan dishes from hot water, and cool 30 minutes. Refrigerate at least 3 hours.

  6. Sprinkle 1 1/2 tablespoons light brown sugar evenly over surface of each custard. Place ramekins on a baking sheet, and broil 5 1/2 inches from heat 3 minutes or until sugar melts. Cool on wire racks to allow sugar to harden. Serve immediately or refrigerate.