HOME > Chowhound > Home Cooking >

ginger creme brûlée keeps breaking - help!

tastycakes May 19, 2012 12:49 PM

i need to make ginger creme brûlée in a large pan to serve family style, not in ramekins. i am an experienced pastry chef so i can't for the life of me figure out why it keeps breaking. from the looks of the pot, it broke before i even baked it. the finished product had lumps of butterfat all throughout and had a fat slick on top. i tried it once in a water bath at 325 with foil covering, vented. then i tried again at 315 uncovered. any suggestions? i think i'm steeping the ginger too long. does it have an enzyme or acid that would curdle the cream?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. hotoynoodle RE: tastycakes May 19, 2012 02:38 PM

    what's the recipe?

    you definitely don't need to vent it during cooking. bake uncovered, but that wouldn't have broken the custard.

    1. w
      wyogal RE: tastycakes May 19, 2012 02:41 PM

      My guess is that yes, it's the ginger. It has the same enzyme that breaks down protein as tenderizers. (I just did a google: ginger enzyme cream breaking)
      Maybe you could do it without the ginger, then use a ginger sauce or garnish with candied ginger.

      1 Reply
      1. re: wyogal
        babette feasts RE: wyogal May 21, 2012 09:14 AM

        Agreed, too much fresh ginger will make dairy separate, especially once heated. I learned this when adding fresh ginger juice to ice cream base and having it separate. Dried powdered ginger does not have this effect. When adding dried spices to custards, I add them to the egg/sugar mix rather than to the liquid, as I find they incorporate better and don't just float on top.

      Show Hidden Posts