Orange buttermilk sorbet:
1 cup water
3/4 cup granulated sugar
Finely grated zest of 11/2 large navel oranges
1 2/3 cups buttermilk
3/4 cup fresh orange juice
Milk chocolate crème brûlée:
5 ounces milk chocolate, finely chopped
1 1/4 cups whole milk
1 1/4 cups heavy cream
1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
5 large egg yolks
1/4 cup granulated sugar plus additional sugar for top crust, divided
1. Make sorbet: In medium saucepan, combine water, sugar and orange zest. Bring to boil, stirring to dissolve sugar. Remove from heat and cool until tepid. Whisk in buttermilk and orange juice. Pour into covered container and refrigerate until cold.
2. Process in ice cream machine according to manufacturer’s instructions. Scrape sorbet into chilled freezer container. Cover and freeze until firm.
3. Make crème brûlée: Position rack in center of oven and preheat to 300°F. Arrange six 41/2-ounce ramekins or crème brûlée molds in roasting pan or rimmed baking sheet.
4. Melt milk chocolate according to directions in Chocolate Key on page 65. Keep warm.
5. Combine milk and cream in medium saucepan. Using paring knife, scrape vanilla bean seeds into cream mixture. Bring mixture to gentle boil. Remove from heat. In medium bowl, whisk together yolks and 1/4 cup sugar until blended. Whisk about 1/2 cup hot cream mixture into yolks. Whisk remaining cream mixture into egg mixture until just blended. Whisk into melted chocolate until smooth. Strain through fine-mesh sieve into pitcher or large glass measuring cup with spout.
6. Pour mixture into ramekins or crème brulee molds, dividing it evenly. Pour hot water into roasting pan so that it comes halfway up sides of ramekins. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until just set. Using tongs, carefully remove ramekins from water bath and place them on rimmed baking sheet to cool at room temperature for 30 minutes, leaving pan of water in oven to cool. Refrigerate custards for several hours, until thoroughly chilled.
7. Caramelize top of custards: Sprinkle top of each chilled custard with granulated sugar (about 2 teaspoons) in even layer. Hold propane torch several inches above surface and, using circular motion, brown sugar to form crust. Let stand for 2 minutes to firm up crust and serve immediately or refrigerate for up to 2 hours.
8. Serve crème brûlée in ramekin on top of plate, with scoop of sorbet along side of it.
L’Ecrivain Restaurant, 109a Lower Baggot Street Dublin 2, Ireland;
phone (011) 353-661-1919.
Next Article: Sticky Toffee Pudding