Monday, July 26, 2004

Midnight Sweets

♥ dead easy french dessert: creme caramel
This is yet another pinkcocoa's kitchen production. I came upon a dead easy creme caramel recipe while browsing at one of my favourite taiwanese tv program called "I've got a crazy idea". It's an innovative home idea show and I picked up quite a lot of good tips on 'house management' from watching the show.

I read about the super easy recipe on creme caramel using microwave last night and the recipe somehow was just stuck in my mind for the whole night until I could no longer hold myself but rushed into the kitchen to make this scrumptious dessert right in the middle of the night at 1.30am!

♥ foodies date:
25th July 2004, early in the morning 1.30am
♥ where: pinkcocoa's kitchen
I found the recipe here.
I mucked around with the original recipe and here's my version:

♥ Dead Easy Creme Caramel
for the caramel:
1tbsp sugar
1tbsp water

Mix sugar and water in a bowl. Heat in microwave on high for 1minute. Let it cool a little and pour into individual mould or container. A mug or a small bowl works fine here. I used my soup bowl to make one large one.

♥ caramel
This is my caramel after my third attempt. Look at the lovely brown colour! It's really not that hard making caramel except that my microwave (not really mine. It's my flatmate's) is already at a retired age. Mind you, it's really old. What takes 1minute to heat up in a 'normal' microwave takes 4min with mine. I still haven't mastered my skill in using this old-age microwave so I burnt my caramel twice. If your sugar hasnt yet caramelised after 1min, simply heat it again in 10sec sequence until you get a nice caramel texture.

For the creme:
200ml milk
50g sugar
2 eggs, beaten

1. Mix milk and sugar together and heat in microwave on high for 10-15sec. this is just to make sure an even mix of the two.
2. Mix beaten egg into the sugar-milk mixture evenly.
3. Strain the egg mixture through a sieve and pour into mould.
4. Heat on high in microwave for 4minutes.
5. Flip over the mould onto a plate and serve! It's nice cold too. I had mine cold.

I followed the original recipe and heat it on high for 4minutes. But just as the microwave process entered into its 4th minute, the egg mixture started to dance a little in my bowl. I could also see my creme caramel is starting to burn from the middle. There's something odd about my microwave. The food always start burning from the middle as opposed to burning from the edge. It just doesnt make sense. Also it doesnt seem to be able to handle liquid stuff. Last time I tried melting chocolate and it burnt so badly even though i only heat it for 1min. And that's on medium too.

♥ freshly out from the microwave
You can see that the creme is starting to form a curd-like texture because it's been heated too long. Strange thing that my creme caramel started to burn from the middle too. I wonder if it's the same with other microwave. (btw that's my hand you are seeing in the pics)

♥ after a night in the fridge
I decided to enjoy a cold creme caramel so I left it in the fridge. The creme caramel seemed to have contracted a little.

♥ flip it over!
Now you can see the burnt from the middle very clearly. But I was surprised to find a well-formed and yummilicious-looking dessert once I flipped it over.

♥ creme caramel with strawberry
It's all about hiding your bad points and showing only your good one. I used strawberries to hide the ugly burnt in the middle.

♥ the inner side of creme caramel
As you can see from the pics, the creme caramel wasnt silky and smooth. My suspicion is that the dancing that it did in the microwave (naughty naughty creme caramel!) resulted in the bee-hive texture. However it was only the middle bits that was not smooth, the outer ring of the creme caramel is smoother but I wouldnt describe it as silky. The overall taste was ok, if only the texture is more silky. My fault for over-heating it.

♥ adjustments to the recipe:
1. Heat the creme caramel in the microwave on medium for 4 minutes. If it's not done, add another 30sec to it, repeating this step until it is done.
2. Make sure you stand in front of your microwave to observe any changes in the creme caramel. I left the kitchen after I placed it into microwave and found my creme caramel doing a little dirty dancing inside when I returned! The dirty dancing ruined its silkiness.
3. Alternately, I would choose to steam the creme caramel using my taiwanese cooker. I think this would ensure the silkiness. Remember to make sure the water is boiling and steaming before placing to cook. It would take roughly about 10-15min to cook. A trick to make perfect steam egg is to slip a chopstick on each end of the wok under the lid so there's a slight gap. I can't remember the terminology behind it but it's smart advice from my good old granny.

This was my first attempt at making a french dessert: creme caramel. It didnt go too well but didnt go too bad either. There's still more room for improvement!