Preheat oven to 300 degrees. In a medium saucepan, combine the cream, 1 tablespoon of sugar and the vanilla bean. Bring to a scald. Meanwhile, put the remaining sugar, rum and egg yolks in a large bowl and whisk just to blend. While gently whisking the yolks, drizzle the hot cream into them to gradually warm them up. Strain into a pitcher. Divide the custard among 8 ramekins. Skim any bubbles off the surface. Put the cups in a roasting pan and add enough hot water to come halfway up the sides of the cups. Tightly cover the pan with foil and bake for 35-45 minutes. They should still jiggle slightly but their surfaces should be set. Let cool to room temperature in the bath, then remove the custards and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight. To serve, sprinkle on some sugar and melt with the tip of a propane torch flame.
Recipe courtesy of Wayne Harley Brachman