I go through these phases. For instance, when I discovered the joys of herby mushrooms on toast, I remember eating it almost everyday for more than 2 weeks straight! An addictive personality or an obsession, I can’t seem to figure out.

You have those dishes that come into your life with a bang and most often than not, leave with as big an impact (I got so sick of even looking at mushrooms for a long time after my fungi-obsession), and then there are those classics that you never tire of. This recipe I’m pleased to announce, falls under the latter category.

The voluptuous texture of the custard pairs wonderfully with the ever-so-slightly bitter caramel. As clichéd as it may sound, it really is melt-in-the-mouth good! I made 6 ramekins’ worth for 3 of us and devoured half of those myself. When it tastes this good, who needs an excuse? Rhetorical question.


Adapted from Margaret Fulton

For the caramel:

1/4 cup + 2 tbsp sugar

1/4 cup water

For the custard:

500 ml milk (full fat)

1/4 cup sugar

1 vanilla pod, or 1 tsp of vanilla extract

3 eggs


Preheat the oven to 160 C (320 F).

For the caramel:

Heat the sugar and water in a saucepan over low heat, swirling the pan gradually until the sugar starts to dissolve. Turn up the heat and let the sugar boil until golden brown (do not stir at this stage, the sugar tends to crystallize).

Make sure the caramel is at the right consistency; it tends to burn easily after it reaches the caramel stage so keep your eyes on the saucepan. Once you have your dark caramel ready, pour into 6 ramekins or a baking dish. Hold the ramekins/dish with a cloth and swirl the caramel around to coat the sides and bottom, working quickly before it reaches a hard set.

For the custard:

Warm the milk in a saucepan and add the slit vanilla pod. (If using vanilla extract, wait till the next step to add it in.)

In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs, sugar and vanilla extract (if using). Pour the milk gradually into the egg mixture, stirring constantly. Strain through a fine sieve. Pour the custard into the ramekins or baking dish.

Place the ramekins/dish into another deeper baking pan and pour hot water till it is about 1″ below the rim of the ramekins. Bake the smaller ramekins for 25 minutes and larger for 30-35 minutes until a skewer inserted into the center of the custard comes out clean. Let cool slightly before refrigerating for several hours or overnight.

Once completely chilled, loosen out the edges by running a knife around the sides and turn out onto serving plates. Alternatively, serve directly without unmoulding.


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