Pumpkin Pie Creme Brulee
- Pecan and Butter Cracker Crust, recipe follows
- 3 1/2 cups heavy cream, divided
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1/2 teaspoon powdered ginger
- 1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped and pod reserved
- 8 egg yolks
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 2 cups canned pumpkin puree
- Hot water
- 1/4 cup turbinado sugar
- Butter Cracker and Pecan Crust:
- 32 butter crackers (recommended: Ritz crackers)
- 1/2 cup pecans
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter melted, plus more if needed
- 2 to 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
Divide the crust into 8 (6-ounce) custard cups. Put them into a 9 by 13-inch baking dish or roasting pan and blind bake in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove and set aside to cool.
In a medium bowl, whisk the yolks with the sugar until the mixture is pale yellow and the sugar is dissolved.
Add the remaining 1 1/2 cups of cream and the 1/2 cup of milk to the cream and spice mixture. Slowly incorporate the yolk and sugar mixture, then strain through a medium-size sieve. Whisk in the pumpkin puree.
Divide the pumpkin mixture evenly into the custard cups lined with the crust.* Add the hot water into the baking dish or roasting pan to create a hot bath and put the pan into the oven. Bake until the custard is starting to set, yet still a little wiggly in the middle, about 35 to 45 minutes. Remove the brulee from the oven and let cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate overnight or at least 6 hours.
Lightly sprinkle each custard with the turbinado sugar. Heat the sugar with a butane torch until caramelized. To get a thick caramelized sugar crust, repeat this, with just a light sprinkling each time. Allow to cool and serve.
*Guy's Tip: if you happen to have any leftover creme brulee mixture, pour it into a baking dish and put it into another roasting pan. Add hot water about halfway up the sides of the dish and bake until custard is starting to set, yet still a little wiggly in the middle, about 35 to 45 minutes. Remove and cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate overnight or at least 6 hours. Refer to recipe for caramelizing sugar on top after it has cooled completely.Butter Cracker and Pecan Crust:
In the bowl of a food processor fitted with the metal blade, pulse the crackers and pecans until finely ground, about 6 to 10 (3-second) pulses. Add the melted butter and brown sugar and pulse to combine. Press into the bottom of a springform pan, baking dish, or 8 (6-ounce) ramekins.