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Chocolate Pots de Creme

Chocolate Pots de Crème: Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C) and have the oven rack in the center of the oven. Place 4 - 1/2 cup (120 ml) ovenproof dishes or ramekins in a large shallow pan.

In a saucepan, over medium heat, bring the cream, milk, coffee powder, and chocolate just to a simmer (the cream just begins to bubble around the edges). 

Meanwhile in a heatproof bowl beat the egg, egg yolks and sugar until thick and pale (about 1-2 minutes). (You can do this with a wire whisk or hand mixer.) Gradually pour the hot cream into the egg yolk mixture, making sure you keep whisking constantly so the eggs don't curdle. Stir in the vanilla extract.

Pour the mixture back into your saucepan, and stirring constantly with a wooden spoon or heatproof spatula, heat the mixture just until hot to the touch. Strain into a large measuring cup or pitcher and then evenly pour the cream into the ramekins. Prepare a water bath (bain marie) by carefully pouring enough boiling water so that the water comes about halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Cover with a large piece of aluminum foil, cutting a few slits in the foil to allow the steam to escape. Bake for about 30 - 40 minutes (baking time can vary depending on size of ramekins and temperature of water) or just until the Chocolate Pots de Crème are set (they will still wobble a bit in the center).

Immediately remove the Chocolate Pots de Crème from the water bath and cool to room temperature on a wire rack (about one hour). Cover and refrigerate for at least 6 hours, preferably overnight, or until cold and firm. Can be served with whipped cream. At this point they can be stored (covered) in the refrigerator for about 5 days. (This recipe can be doubled.)

Serves 4.

Chocolate Pots de Crème:

1/2 cup (120 ml) heavy "whipping" cream (35-40% butterfat content)

1/2 cup (120 ml) whole milk (full fat)

1/2 teaspoon instant coffee or espresso powder (optional)

2 ounces (60 grams) semi sweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped

1 large egg (50 grams without shell) plus 2 large egg yolks (35 grams), room temperature

1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated white sugar

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

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