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Coconut and Ginger Crème Brûlée

This traditional baked egg custard is given a tropical touch through the addition of ginger and coconut - all the more pleasant because their sharp, fresh flavours are unexpected. Don't rush this recipe - it's not complicated but each step needs to be followed with care.


Coconut and Ginger Creme Brulee
Coconut and Ginger Creme Brulee
500 ml (17 fl oz/2 cups) pouring (whipping) cream
20 g (¾ oz/⅓ cup) shredded coconut
3 teaspoons finely grated fresh ginger
4 egg yolks, at room temperature
55 g (2 oz/¼ cup) caster (superfine) sugar
2 tablespoons raw (demerara) sugar



  1. Preheat the oven to 160°C (315°F/Gas 2–3).
  2. Put the cream, shredded coconut and ginger in a saucepan. Slowly heat the mixture, stirring, until it is just below boiling point. Strain into a bowl, pressing on the solids to extract all the liquid. Discard the solids.
  3. Using electric beaters, whisk the egg yolks and caster sugar in a heatproof bowl for about 5 minutes until thick and pale. Gradually whisk in the hot cream. Place the bowl over a saucepan of barely simmering water, making sure that the base of the bowl does not touch the water. Stir the mixture over the simmering water for 10 minutes, or until it has thickened slightly and coats the back of a spoon.
  4. Put four 125 ml (4 fl oz/½ cup) capacity ovenproof dishes in a roasting tin and divide the cream mixture among the dishes. Add enough boiling water to the roasting tin to come three-quarters of the way up the sides of the dishes. Bake for 20–25 minutes, or until the custards are just set. Carefully remove the dishes from the water and set aside to cool to room temperature, then cover and refrigerate for 3 hours.
  5. Preheat the grill (broiler) to high. Put the custards in a shallow roasting tin and surround them with ice cubes. Sprinkle the tops of the custards with the raw sugar. Place under the hot grill until the sugar has melted and turned golden brown. Alternatively, use a small blow torch to caramelize the sugar.



This variation on the classic French custard gains a tropical zing with the addition of coconut and fresh ginger.


Main ingredient:
Cream/Milk, Eggs


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