Creamy Caramel Custard

Bit a shocking news today, I made crème caramel.
Crème caramel. For heaven's sake!

Cause to tell you the truth, I never made a non-instant pudding before in my entire life. But yesterday I managed the making of six creamy caramel custards from scratch and cool them overnight. Even I myself can't believe I did. It may not be winning crème caramel, but not so bad for first trial either.

Here, may I present you.. (Drum roll please.)

Ahem! My first crème caramel ever.

I first saw a puding karamel (this is how we called the dessert in Indonesian) recipe on a local cooking community site. I could not bear the temptation so I googled for more. There were load versions of this dessert under the name caramel flan (the term used in Spanish-speaking countries and North America), pudding or custard. Amongst them I found a great caramel custard plus a caramel sauce recipes from separate sources. Then I combined both and, as usual, made few changes.

The caramel sauce.

Caramel Sauce
(Adapted from Simply Recipes)

  • 240 g caster sugar (or you can use cane or brown instead)
  • 2½ tablespoons lemon juice (optional)
  • 90 g unsalted butter
  • 120 ml heavy whipping cream

  1. In a saucepan, simmer sugar with lemon juice until melt. Do not stir.
  2. When sugar all golden, stir in the butter—careful, melt boiling sugar stings more than boiling water (my left index-fingertip is only one of the living proofs)—until wholly dissolve. Take pan off the heat.
  3. Count to three, then gently whisk in whipping cream.
  4. Store in a mason jar, reheat briefly in a boiling water before use.
Yield 1 jar (approximately 400 g).

The creamy custard.

Crème Caramel
(Adapted from Taste of Home)

  • Half recipe of caramel sauce
  • 230 g cream cheese
  • 5 eggs
  • 350 ml evaporated milk (or can be substitute with fresh milk)
  • 400 g sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 vanilla bean (take the filling, or 1 teaspoon vanilla essence)
  • ½ teaspoon plain agar or gelatin powder (or can be substitute with 2 tablespoons cornstarch)—optional, only if you're using fresh milk.

Preparation method:
  1. Preheat a bain-marie or steamer.
  2. Meanwhile, make the caramel sauce and pour into the mold. (I used 1 part of caramel sauce to 5 part of custard mixture.)
  3. Straightly beat cream cheese until smooth. Beat in yolks and eggs one at a time until well incorporated. Beat in all the milk and vanilla until smooth. (If using fresh milk, simmer first until boiling. Take a part and mix with agar until all fused, mix again with the rest of the boiling milk.)
  4. Pour over caramel sauce in the mold and cook for 30 minute in bain-marie.
  5. Let cool in room temperature for an hour, chill it in fridge for another eight hours or overnight. To unmold, put in boiling water briefly, run a knife around edges and invert on a serving platter.
Yield 6 serves.