One of the most beautiful trees on earth is without a doubt the chestnut tree. Sadly, in North America 4 billion chestnut trees were killed by fungus in the 1900’s, which is just one reason why chestnut desserts are hard to find on dessert menus.
Using fresh chestnuts is for many pastry chefs something which is too labor intensive. However, frozen I.Q.F. (individual quick frozen) chestnuts as well as chestnut puree is readily available.
The crème brûlée below is formulated using non sweetened chestnuts, if using sweetened puree reduce the sugar content in this recipe. When selecting fresh chestnuts ensure that the skin feels tight to the meat. Aromatize chestnut desserts with Vanilla, chestnut liquor or Cognac.
Chestnut Crème Brûlée
About 8 servings
|5 oz||Peeled chestnuts||150 g|
|8 oz||Milk||240 g|
|1 oz||Chestnut liquor||30 g|
|2 teaspoon||Vanilla bean extract||10 g|
|7 oz||Egg yolk||210 g|
|7 oz||Light or medium brown sugar||210 g|
|18 oz||Heavy cream||540 g|
|4 oz||Candied chestnut pieces||120 g|
- Combine peeled chestnuts with milk and blend to fine puree. Add liquor, vanilla and salt. Set aside.
- In a bowl whisk yolks and brown sugar vigorously but without making the mixture light and airy. Add heavy cream and chestnut mixture.
- Pour in ramekins and place on tray filled with water. Bake at 160°C (325°F) until crème brûlée no longer trembles, about 55 minutes. (Depending on height of ramekin).
- Once cooled sprinkle surface with sugar and caramelize, decorate with candied chestnut pieces.