The instant you take a bite of this ultra-creamy, dairy-free, coconut crème brûlée, you'll fall in love. Smooth and velvety describe both the custard base and the crispy, caramelized maple sugar topping.
CRME BRÉLÉE: WHAT IS it?
I'll admit that I enjoy nothing more than finishing a classy French tea with a crème brûlée. It is a delicate, thick custard with a caramelized sugar topping that has been burned. The ideal bite of toasted, crispy, and velvety. If you get the time and temperature right, it's quite simple even though it can seem a little fancy.
After a few tries, I am certain that I have the best recipe for a crème brûlée produced with full-fat coconut milk that is DAIRY-FREE. Don't be fooled by the coconut milk, though; this custard is just as flavorful and creamy as the traditional recipe without using heavy cream. And no, there isn't a lot of coconut flavor.
THE BEST DAIRY-FREE CRÈME BRÛLÉE RECIPE – 5 SIMPLE INGREDIENTS
- Get a can of full-fat coconut milk, just to be sure. Coconut milk that is regular or light won't be creamy enough to make a rich custard.
- There is no processed sugar in maple syrup. Instead, I'm making a dessert with exactly the proper amount of sweetness using maple syrup.
- Several traditional recipes call for real vanilla beans, which you can use instead of vanilla extract. However, the vanilla extract also works wonderfully, keeping this dish as straightforward as possible.
- Egg yolks: Egg yolks are essential for creating a creamy, dense custard. I've tried recipes that also call for egg whites, but they don't have the same consistency.
- Granulated maple sugar is what I prefer to use for the caramelized topping.
HOW TO MAKE COCONUT CRÈME BRÛLÉE
7 for making this coconut crème brûlée ideal. They should be baked at 325°F (165°C) using a water bath to assist the custard cook evenly. To begin, gather 4 ramekins and a baking tray that is the size of a quarter.
The coconut milk combination is warmed. Combine the coconut milk, maple syrup, and vanilla essence in a pot over low heat. Remove the pot from the heat when it starts to simmer.
Get the eggs ready. Whisk the egg yolks rapidly while incorporating the coconut mixture slowly into a large mixing basin. Once the custard is combined, continue whisking.
Make a bath of water. Divide the custard filling equally among the 4 ramekins. After gently filling the baking sheet with hot water until it comes halfway up the sides of the ramekins, place it in the oven. Alternatively, to avoid any spills, you can place the tray first in the oven and then pour the boiling water from there.
Cool after baking. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the custard is barely set on the exterior and somewhat jiggly on the inside. Prior to chilling, make sure the custard has reached room temperature. To ensure that the custard firms up evenly, cover the tray and place it in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours.
Make the topping of caramelized sugar. When ready to serve, top each custard with 1 teaspoon of maple or coconut sugar. After that, heat the sugar using a cooking flame until it turns caramelized. To avoid burning the sugar and melting the custard underneath, keep rotating the torch and avoid holding it still.
- Remove any bubbles from the custard's surface before cooling to guarantee a smooth coating on top. You can do this by gently stroking each bubble with a paper towel while doing so. The bubble will automatically be removed by doing this!
- Before chilling, let the custard cool fully. The custard will continue to cook all the way to the middle while it is still warm. Your custard base will be perfectly and uniformly cooked when it's time to chill.
- The sugar topping can be sifted or ground. Larger granules found in maple sugar and coconut sugar are more likely to burn when burnt. For an ultra-fine texture and smoother caramelized topping, either sift the sugar or pulse it in a spice grinder.
COCONUT CRÈME BRÛLÉE IS THE PERFECT MAKE-AHEAD DESSERT
Creme brulees are ideal for creating ahead of time because they are supposed to be consumed coldly. Although I advise preparing the day before for the greatest texture, the custard itself may be kept in the fridge for up to two days. But keep in mind that for the perfect crunch, the sugar must be caramelized just before serving.
COCONUT CRÈME BRÛLÉE (DAIRY-FREE)
- 1 (13.5 ounce /398ml) can full-fat coconut milk
- 3 tablespoons maple syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 4 large egg yolks
- 4 teaspoon coconut sugar or maple sugar, (see notes above)
- Preheat oven to 325ºF (165°C). Place 4 ramekins on a rimmed baking tray.
- Make coconut milk mixture. In a pot over medium heat, add the coconut milk, maple syrup, and vanilla extract. Whisk everything together just until the milk begins to simmer, then remove from heat.
- Temper the eggs into a custard. In a large mixing bowl, whisk the egg yolks together. Add a small amount of the coconut mixture to the egg yolks while whisking vigorously. Continue slowly adding the coconut milk mixture to the mixing bowl until all the coconut milk is incorporated. This process should take two minutes or so.
- Make a hot water bath. Transfer the custard into the 4 ramekins (6-ounce capacity) and carefully pour hot water into the baking dish until it reaches halfway up the side of the ramekins.
- Bake the custards. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes until the outside of the custard is just set and the middle is slightly wobbly.
- Let them chill. Remove from the oven and allow custard to cool. Cover and transfer to the refrigerator. Chill for at least 4 hours.
- Create caramelized sugar. When ready to serve, sprinkle 1 teaspoon of maple sugar or coconut sugar over the surface of each custard. Using a kitchen torch melt the sugar until caramelized. Then serve immediately.
- If you’d like it a little bit sweeter, you can add one more tablespoon of maple syrup or honey in the custard base, but don’t add more than that otherwise it will change the texture.
- When you torch the chilled custard to caramelize the sugar topping it will start to melt the custard underneath, so try to work quickly. You can also place the ramekin in the freezer for 5 minutes after torching to chill and firm up the custard again.
- This is a great culinary torch if you need one!
- While some recipes say that you can use a top broiler to caramelize the sugar, I find that it melts the custard too much, almost back to a thin pudding consistency. So I’d avoid that if possible.
- You can caramelize the sugar topping in advance as well, but just be aware that it will soften over time and not be as crunchy and crackly as immediately caramelized and served.