Purin is a Japanese chilled custard dessert. Ultra rich, cold custard under a thin, crisp candy crust make a delightful combination. The flavour of this classic crème brûlée-like dish is bumped up with a sweet Japanese twist; crystallized ginger.
- 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 4 egg yolks, lightly beaten
- 1/4 cups sugar, plus 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla essence
- 3 tablespoons crystallized ginger, finely minced
Preheat oven to 160°C. Select a shallow casserole (or gratin) dish or 8 single-serving ramekin dishes. Put the cream and milk into a heavy saucepan. Place the pan over medium heat and bring it close to boiling. While the cream mixture heats up, whip the egg yolks with the 1/4 cup of sugar until thickened, about 3 or 4 minutes.
Gradually trickle the hot cream mixture into the thickened yolks stirring constantly. Stir in the vanilla essence. Pour this custard
through a sieve into the casserole dish. Sprinkle half of the minced crystal ginger over the custard. Lower the oven temperature to 150°C. Put the casserole dish in a baking pan in the oven. Fill the pan with hot water halfway up the side of the casserole dish. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes, until the custard is set.
Take the custard out of the water bath and cool to room temperature. When cool, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate it until cold. Stir the remaining ginger into the remaining 1/3 cup of sugar. Sprinkle this mixture as evenly as possible over the cold custard. To caramelize the top, turn on the broiler and set the casserole dish on a baking sheet. Broil about 4 inches from the burner until the sugar begins to caramelize, turning the dish if necessary to melt all the sugar- about 1 minute.
Let the custard sit for 3 or 4 minutes, allowing the sugar crust to cool and harden. To serve, crack the crust all over with the back of a spoon.
Scoop out some of the custard and cracked candy crust for each guest.