Steam-Baked Vanilla Crème Brûlée

Anja Bauman
Anja Bauman
September 19, 2023
Crème brûlée was always my favorite dessert to make when I worked as a pastry chef. Now with the Anova Precision Oven’s steam function, making the perfect crème brûlée at home is easy and stress-free. By setting the steam to 50% and cooking the custard at 195°F (91°C), you do not have to deal with the hassle of a water bath. Note: To make lemon crème brûlée, add 2 teaspoons lemon zest instead of the vanilla bean to the cream mixture. For lavender crème brûlée, add 1 tablespoon dried lavender instead of the vanilla bean. This recipe works best with ramekins that measure 4 1/2 inches (11.4cm) in diameter and 1 inch (2.5cm) deep. If using ramekins of a different size, you may need to adjust the cooking time.
Prep Time
Cook Time
Steam-Baked Vanilla Crème Brûlée
5 (9)
2 cups (473ml)
heavy cream
½ cup (100g)
granulated sugar, divided
vanilla bean
4 large
egg yolks
¼ cup (50g)
turbinado sugar

1. Preheat the Oven

Sous Vide Mode: On
Steam: 50%
Temp: 195°F
Heat: Rear

2. Prepare Ramekins

Place four (4 1/2- by 1-inch) round ramekins on a sheet pan and set aside.

3. Steep the Dairy Mixture

In a medium saucepan, combine the heavy cream and 1/4 cup of the sugar. Cut the vanilla bean in half lengthwise. Scrape out the seeds and add both the seeds and the pod to the saucepan. Place the saucepan over medium-low heat and heat it slowly, stirring it a few times, until it just comes to a simmer. Be careful to not let it come to a full boil. Remove from the heat and let it steep uncovered for 10 minutes.
Steep the Dairy Mixture

4. Prepare the Eggs

Combine the remaining 1/4 cup sugar, egg yolks, and salt in a medium bowl. Use a wooden spoon to stir until evenly combined.

5. Temper the Eggs

Slowly stir 1/4 cup of the heavy cream mixture into the egg mixture to temper it. Slowly stir the rest of the heavy cream into the now-tempered eggs until combined. You are trying to avoid creating too many air bubbles, so it is important to be gentle.
Temper the Eggs

6. Add to Ramekins

Strain the custard through a fine-mesh strainer into a second bowl or a large measuring cup with a spout. Divide the mixture evenly between the ramekins.
Add to Ramekins

7. Bake

Carefully transfer to the oven and let cook until the custards are set but still a little jiggly in the middle, with an internal temperature of 185°F (85°C), about 25 minutes.
Sous Vide Mode: On
Steam: 50%
Temp: 195°F
Heat: Rear
00:25 Timer

8. Chill

Remove from the oven and let cool on a wire rack at room temperature for 1 hour before wrapping in plastic and refrigerating for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.

9. Torch

When ready to serve, sprinkle 1 tablespoon turbinado sugar onto each custard to completely cover the surface. Tap off any excess. Use a kitchen blowtorch to caramelize the top of each custard, starting with the edges and finishing in the middle.

10. Serve

Serve immediately.
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