2 cups heavy cream
1/2 vanilla bean
1 small egg
3 large egg yolks
7 tablespoons maple syrup
4 tablespoons sugar, for topping
6 brulee molds
Method of Preparation:
1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
2. Pour the heavy cream into a saucepan and place over medium heat. While the cream is heating, slice the vanilla bean in half lengthwise and scrape the bean with the knife. Place the seeds and skin in the heating cream. Scald the cream by heating it until bubbles start to form around the edge of the pan. Remove from the heat.
3. In a large mixing bowl, whisk together the whole egg, egg yolks, and maple syrup until well blended.
4. Continue to whisk while slowly pouring the hot cream into the egg mixture and whisk until the mixture is smooth. Pour the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve to remove the vanilla bean pieces and overcooked eggs.
5. Place the molds on a baking sheet with 1-inch-high sides. Fill the molds with the custard and set the sheet in the oven.
6. Create a water bath by pouring enough water into the baking sheet to reach halfway up the sides of the molds.
7. Bake for about 40 minutes. If the custard is under baked. Put them back in the oven and shake them every 5 minutes or so until they are ready.
8. Remove the molds from the water bath and place on a cooling rack for 30 minutes. Then refrigerate for 2 hours (or for to 3 days) before serving; the custards will finish setting in the refrigerator.
For the Sugar Top:
9. If you have a blow torch, place about 2 tsp. of sugar evenly on top of each custard. Then carefully torch the sugar until it becomes a golden brown.
10. If not using a blow torch, preheat the broiler.
11. Place the molds on a clean baking sheet. Sprinkle 2 teaspoons of the sugar over the top of the custards.
12. When the broiler is hot, place the sheet about 4 inches under the broiler and broil until the sugar is caramelized. They are finished when they are light golden brown. Serve immediately.
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