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Coconut Creme Brulee And Coconut Sorbet

I am sure your holiday baking is full of cookies and cakes and after spending a lot of time in the kitchen, the last thing you think about is more desserts. Well, what if I were to bring you these two-bite coconut creme brulees and coconut sorbet? Do I see a sparkle in your eyes again? Granted you have to like coconut to begin with but knowing you can keep the cremes plain or flavored to your taste is always a good thing.

Since the weather had been so nice and it felt more like a cool summer day than early December, I brought these along to our weekly get together with the neighbors. We were trying to get in full Christmas mode decorating C’s trees (the party was at her house), drinking egg nogg while the kids were making sandmen instead of snowmen outside. Yet, no one was in the mood for fruitcake, pumpkin roll or chocolate cake. I had just finished a batch of macarons for gift giving and was facing an evil amount of egg yolks, so creme brulees were the obvious choice.

My dear B. hates coconut with a vengeance, not the flavor but the texture, what he calls those gritty shreds, while I on the other hand love it…and love seems like a small word: the scent, the texture, the flavor…everything! I will always remember the day my dad brought a fresh coconut back to the house, piercing holes in it, the juice dripping down our chins, and cutting it open chopping its flesh out…nothing like what you find at the stores in pretty blue packages these days. The opening of the coconut was something of a ceremonial, much like the day he brought home papaya, scooped the seeds out,drizzled it with lime juice and handed a half to each of us…the best moment in a girl’s life: eating with my hands, with juice and fruit all over and not a care in the world!

Back to the creme brulees though. Since I had some coconut texture haters in the group,I decided to infuse the milk with the flesh ad pass it through a sieve prior to baking. The only shred of shreds (no pun intended) is the toasted coconut on top of the sorbet which you can omit if necessary. I used what C. had on hand, sweetened coconut so I reduced the sugar in the creme brulee batter and since it has caramelized sugar on top, I think you won’t really miss it either. The sorbet is a simple syrup mixed with coconut milk and processed in a ice cream machine but you can achieve a nice sorbet by doing as follows: freeze the mixture for a couple of hours, take it out and whip it in your mixer with the paddle attachment or a hand held mixer. Repeat a couple of times.

Coconut Creme Brulee And Coconut Sorbet:

Serves 4

For the Creme Brulee:
1 cup egg yolks (between 6 and 8 depending on the size of your eggs)
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup grated coconut (increase sugar to 1 cup if you use unsweetened coconut)
1/4cup brown sugar mixed with 1/4 cup white sugar for brulee topping

Preheat oven to 350F. Place 4 ramequins inside a roasting pan and set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk the egg yolks with the sugar until pale yellow. Add the coconut. Heat the cream until scalding hot. Slowly whisk it into the egg yolk mixture, mix well,but ot too vigourously or you will add toomuch air. Pour into a container and let cool to room temperature,skim off the top foam if necessary. Pass the mixture through a sieve to remove the coconut and divide among the 4 ramequins. Pour water to about halfway up the sides of the ramequins and put the pan in the oven. Cook for about 15 minutes or until the mixture appear almost set,it should stillwiggleabit in the middle. It is ok to remove the pan from the oven at that point as the custard will continue to bake and set.
Let cool to room, cover loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.
Right before serving: divide sugar on top of each custard and use a blow torch to caramelise the top or put the pan under the broiler.
A good creme brulee is hot on top, room temp in the middle and cold at the bottom.

For The Sorbet:
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
1 can coconut milk

In a saucepan, heat the water with the sugar until the sugar dissolves. Add to the coconut milk.Let cool to room temperature and process in an ice cream maker according to manufacturer’s instructions, or use the hand held or mixer method described above.

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Susan @ SGCC December 19, 2007 um 5:40 am

A double play of coconut sounds good to me! I love your little spoons. Where are they from?

Suganya December 19, 2007 um 5:46 am

Can we use coconut milk for the brulee too?

Helene December 19, 2007 um 6:01 am

Susan:The spoons and mini brulee dish are from Sur La Table.

Suganya: I have not done it with coconut milk but I don’t see why not,as long as you use full fat one. If it has the consistency of milk,it might not work.

Emily December 19, 2007 um 6:14 am

I love coconut anything! I don’t see how you cannot like it. Both of the desserts look fabulous. I think I’ll play around with sorbet this weekend.

Meeta K. Wolff December 19, 2007 um 7:06 am

Dessert from you anytime! But you are not going to believe this I made this for dessert last night too. Slightly different as I did use coconut milk for the brulee and without the sorbet. The coconut milk I used was a the canned type and unsweetened and it came out a charm. AS always lovely!

Peabody December 19, 2007 um 7:30 am

I hate coconut haters. I love it so much and want to bake with it often but everyone seems to go "ew it has coconut." These look wonderful and the infusing is a good solution.

Karen Baking Soda December 19, 2007 um 7:46 am

Well, these days dessert is pretty much on my mind, as "they" decided that I (savoury yeasthead) am responsible for Christmas dessert. Ai!
So I was thinking creme brulee with a little aside.. and there you are! Although I have to whisper I’m firmly on B.’s side; organoleptically speaking coconut just doesn’t do it for me! (Don’t you just love the word? hehe)

Rosa's Yummy Yums December 19, 2007 um 8:24 am

Perfect! I love coconut in anything! A gorgeous creme brulee and a wonderful coconut sorbet!



Susan December 19, 2007 um 1:03 pm

Yes, these definitely bring a sparkle to my eye! And I’m happy to report that everyone in my family loves coconut.

Katy December 19, 2007 um 3:06 pm

LOVELY! I am so hoping for an ice cream maker under the tree on Christmas morning.

Your creme brulee is even cracked perfectly! Mine always gets these huge cracks that cut the dish in half and sink into the cream. Yours look wonderful!

Veron December 19, 2007 um 3:08 pm

Coconut is something I’ll eat when it’s there but I love creme brulee! You promise to make this for me when you come visit?

breadchick December 19, 2007 um 3:33 pm

OK, I was craving something coconuty and creamy last night so I guess this is on my "to make" list for the week.

I remember you picking those spoons up!!! They look great in that picture.

bakeorbreak December 19, 2007 um 5:04 pm

Quinn hates coconut, too, while I adore it. It really cuts down on my coconut intake. These look delicious!

LizNoVeggieGirl December 19, 2007 um 6:40 pm

I’m afraid I’m with your B. on the whole not-liking-coconut-texture thing – I’ve never been a fan, but the elegance of your creme brulee and sorbet are quite enticing-looking!! great idea on straining the coconut before using it, to rid of the gritty texture! maybe if I do that, I’d like coconut? :0)

desie December 19, 2007 um 8:31 pm

oh my goodness, these will both hit the spot for me. they sound delicious. lovely ideas for coconut.

Anh December 19, 2007 um 9:34 pm

Excellent! You always come up with the most delicious sweet treats!

Hillary December 19, 2007 um 10:38 pm

You’re right! You don’t see too many coconut dishes around this time of year. That coconut creme brulee sounds magnificent – I’m always looking for a new creme brulee to try! 🙂

creampuff December 20, 2007 um 1:05 am

Yet another sign that we were meant to be together! I looooooooooove coconut!!! And I love this dessert!

Big Boys Oven December 20, 2007 um 1:24 am

Oh I would like to nib your coconut creme brulee….. I am so excited now!

Amy December 20, 2007 um 8:15 am

Wow I love coconut desserts! These both sound delicious. I love your little spoons too.

Cheryl December 20, 2007 um 1:53 pm

I think you might beat Peabody for my husband’s favorite food blogging girlfriend. He is the coconut king and these two would just make him faint.

Cynthia December 20, 2007 um 8:13 pm

I love you for being nuts about coconut just as I am. The sorbet I am definitely making for Christmas dessert. Thank you!

glamah16 December 21, 2007 um 1:50 am

Cococnut sorbet sounds fantastic. I never liked coconut before until recently. Like B, its the flavor I love, but am gradually learning to love the texture.

Syrie December 21, 2007 um 5:49 am

This looks and sounds so beautiful.

Deborah December 21, 2007 um 4:27 pm

I have a love affair with coconut as well. And, I am really hoping for a kitchen torch for Christmas!!

MyKitchenInHalfCups December 21, 2007 um 6:45 pm

Genius with having it both ways: smooth & coconut! I really enjoy coconut!

eatme_delicious December 24, 2007 um 10:39 pm

Coconut creme brulee, yum! I need to try making different flavours. I love the idea of shredded coconut on top.

Kristen – Dine & Dish December 26, 2007 um 4:33 am

Oh this is brilliant! I love the taste of coconut but also dislike the texture.

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