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Creme Brulee - How much can I prep in advance?

taos Nov 13, 2009 03:28 PM

This question is kind of specific so thanks for answering. Creme brulee is a desert tradition in my family. It's easy to make but takes some time. The custard has to cook and then cool. My question is ... how much of this can be done in advance? How far in advance? My recipe says to cool it in a refrigerator for from 2 hours to 2 days. After I do that, can I travel with it for a few more hours out of the fridge?

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    jeanmarieok RE: taos Nov 13, 2009 03:31 PM

    You can probably travel with it for a bit - I'd put it on ice

    1. Cherylptw RE: taos Nov 13, 2009 03:37 PM

      You can make it 2-3 days in advance; we made it twice a week in the restaurant I used to work in. Once chilled you can pack it in a cooler and it will be fine.

      4 Replies
      1. re: Cherylptw
        Zeldog RE: Cherylptw Nov 13, 2009 04:10 PM

        I've made the custard day in advance and it was fine. Maybe it would last a day or two longer if kept cold. However, NE Elaine is right, the brulee crust must be done just prior to serving. I had a couple of leftover ramekins of creme brulee once and after one day in the fridge the crust had turned to syrup.

        1. re: Zeldog
          taos RE: Zeldog Nov 13, 2009 05:02 PM

          What exactly is the crust with regard to brulee? Do you mean the fired-on sugar on top? Is that the technical name for it?

          1. re: taos
            Zeldog RE: taos Nov 13, 2009 05:10 PM

            I don't know if there's an official technical name, but that's what I mean.

          2. re: Zeldog
            Cherylptw RE: Zeldog Nov 13, 2009 05:14 PM

            You're right about bruleeing the top; that part can't be done in advance but the mixing, baking & chilling can be done ahead

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          NE_Elaine RE: taos Nov 13, 2009 03:38 PM

          I wouldn't cook it more than a day in advance, the consistency changes. I would also wait to carmelize the sugar on top until you get to your final destination.

          When I travel with creme brulee or flan, I load the little custard cups into a cake pan, cover with saran wrap and then place blue ice on top. It works really well.

          1. cosmopolita RE: taos Nov 13, 2009 11:34 PM

            I'm curious to know your recipe, you could tell me the doses?

            I do so:

            (Translator is top right)

            1 Reply
            1. re: cosmopolita
              taos RE: cosmopolita Nov 14, 2009 03:18 AM

              Thanks for the answers everyone.

              This is the recipe I use. I usually double it to get 12 servings:


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