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Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Light the Kitchen on Fire! (...safely)

Happy Tuesday! I recently christened my new blowtorch, making creme brulee with an extra sugary top. It got me thinking...what else can go under the flames? Here are a few ideas. Get the butane

Mangoes Flambe
Gourmet May 2003


  • 4 (1-pound) firm-ripe mangoes
  • 6 tablespoons turbinado sugar such as Sugar in the Raw
  • 1/3 cup dark rum

  1. Preheat broiler.
  2. Wash and dry mangoes. Remove 2 flat sides of each mango with a sharp knife, cutting lengthwise alongside pit and cutting as close to pit as possible so that mango flesh is in 2 large pieces (reserve remaining fruit for another use). Make a crosshatch pattern with a small sharp knife, cutting across fruit down to skin at 1/2-inch intervals and being careful not to pierce through. Grasp fruit at both ends and turn inside out to make flesh side convex.
  3. Arrange fruit, skin side down, in a large shallow baking pan lined with foil and sprinkle evenly with 4 tablespoons turbinado sugar (total). Broil 5 inches from heat until fruit is golden brown (it will not brown evenly), about 5 minutes. Arrange fruit on a large platter.
  4. Cook rum with remaining sugar in a small saucepan over moderately low heat, stirring, until sugar is dissolved. Remove from heat, then carefully ignite rum with a kitchen match and pour, still flaming, over warm mangoes. Serve immediately.

Creme Brulee
Dieter Schorner

  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 5 tbsp. sugar
  • 1/2 vanilla bean, split
  • Small pinch salt
  • 4 egg yolks
  1. Preheat oven to 275°. In a small pan, bring cream, 2 tbsp. sugar, vanilla bean, and salt just to a boil over medium heat. Remove from heat and set aside to cool. Remove and discard vanilla bean.
  2. In another bowl, whisk egg yolks with 1 tbsp. sugar until sugar dissolves. Slowly whisk in cooled cream (if it is not cool, yolks will scramble). Strain through a fine sieve. 
  3. Divide custard between 4 shallow gratin dishes (each about 1/2 cup in capacity). Place dishes in a baking pan, then place pan in oven. Pour enough cold water into pan to come about halfway up sides of dishes. Bake until custards set, 30-35 minutes. 
  4. Cover cooled custards with plastic wrap. Chill in refrigerator for at least 4 hours or overnight. Before serving, sprinkle 1 1/2 tsp. sugar on each custard and use a blowtorch to caramelize tops, holding torch at an angle (flame should barely touch surface) to brown sugar.

Happy baking!

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