June 2, 2011

green tea creme brulee with fortune cookies

One of the standby desserts that Plated Desserts made was creme brulee, to satisfy the cream/custard requirement. I decided to make green tea flavored ones, just to defy the norm and put a twist on it. Thank goodness Chef Morse had some matcha green tea powder on hand - otherwise I would've had to use regular green tea bags and the flavor wouldn't be as pleasant (not to mention it wouldn't have had that nice green color, probably more of a grayish tint instead).

green tea creme brulee

The creme part was baked in the oven with about an inch of water in the pan (to prevent it from drying out). They were in the oven for about half an hour, until the custard set.

Since this was a cream/custard dessert, Chef's requirement was to have a "crunch" element to offset the cream texture. I was going to recycle something we had in the dry box (basically a plastic tub filled with desiccant to keep things dry and crisp), but Chef suggested fortune cookie (implied Asian stereotype here!).

fortune cookie mold

First I had to make a ring mold out of thin cardboard (I used a bakery cake box). The size of the mold depends on the size of the fortune cookies you want, and the thickness of the ring actually doesn't matter. The ring was placed on a silicone baking mat (to prevent the cookie from sticking) and then I spatula-ed some honey tuile cookie batter (see recipe below) into the ring mold, using the spatula to even out the batter until it was same thickness as the cardboard.

fortune cookie fold

They honey tuile cookies were baked until golden, then taken out and immediately spatula-ed off and folded in half (you need heat resistant fingers) and wrapped around a wooden dowel like so. The dowel should be anchored with a weight (i.e. a heavy book) so it doesn't move around while you're trying to manipulate the fortune cookie. After you get the desired shape, place the cookie somewhere it can cool without unfolding (I lined a bunch of them up side by side between two pans).

If you want to place a fortune in the cookie, it would probably be best to stick it in when you're folding the cookie in half straight out of the oven.

burning sugar

After the creme part was done, we let them cool to the touch, and then covered the surface with liberal amounts of sugar and took a torch to it, making sure to keep the torch moving so there wouldn't be any burnt sugar spots.

green tea creme brulee display

And there you have it, green tea creme brulee with fortune cookies!


Honey tuile cookie batter (makes two pounds)

All-purpose flour 13 oz
Powdered sugar 10 oz
Soft butter 10.5 oz
Honey 6 oz
Egg whites 5 oz

1) Cream together the butter and honey in a mixer until smooth.
2) Add the egg whites and blend until fully incorporated.
3) Sift the flour and powdered sugar together and add to the mixer until blended evenly.
4) Refrigerate the batter until firm.


  1. Chef Morse? Really? That's awesome. :)

    Also, I love creme brulee! I have my own torch and all. Did the green tea part come out well? Should I try it myself sometime?

  2. Chris, I didn't know you loved creme brulee! Where'd you get a torch, that's so hardcore. Have you been brulee-ing other things?

    The green tea creme brulee turned out well - another reason I chose to flavor it with green tea was so it'd be less sweet (and I'm all for that). Here's the recipe from my textbook to make 10 servings:

    Heavy cream 32 fl oz
    Sugar 6 oz
    Salt pinch
    Vanilla beans 1 (or 1 tbsp vanilla extract)
    Beaten egg yolks 5.5 oz
    Sugar for brulee-ing as needed

    1) Combine cream, 3 oz sugar and salt in saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring gently.
    2) Remove from heat and add vanilla (if using the bean, split it and scrape the seeds, then use both the seeds and the pod and steep for 15 min) and flavoring if desired (2-3 tbsp of matcha powder).
    3) Bring the mixture to a boil.
    4) Blend egg yolks with remaining sugar. Temper the mixture by adding a third of the hot cream, stirring constantly with a whisk. Add the remaining hot cream.
    5) Ladle into ramekins (three quarters full) and bake in a water bath at 325F until just set (20-25 min).
    6) Remove the ramekins and let cool, then chill in refrigerator.
    7) Finish by coating with sugar and torching the sugar till it caramelizes.

    Let me know if you end up making it and take pictures!

  3. Earl Grey Creme Brulee!!! When I come visit or if you come to NY, we should make this. Or, if I make it first, I will send you pictures. I've already gone to my fav restaurant and they gave me a raw creme brulee and I mixed in Earl Grey extract and it was AMAZING! perhaps instead of making my own this will suffice...

  4. The torch was a birthday present several years back. One of the best birthday presents ever (it also came with a set of ramekins...). I don't think I've used it to brulee anything but creme, though. What else does one brulee?

  5. You can sprinkle any surface with sugar and brulee it!

    At the end of this post I have bananas brulee: http://culinaryme.blogspot.com/2011/05/fancy-tarts.html

  6. Hi Jo,

    I stumbled upon this old blog of yours while googling for pictures of "Paton" for Chef Mark's Advanced Pastry class at CCSF. I soon realized that I knew you from Homestead High School. I was Class of 2007 with your sister Iris. You and I were in school plays together.

    I just wanted to say hi and note a funny coincidence. As I have left my office job almost a year ago to pursue a career in cooking. I also remember looking up to you when I was in high school, hope that's not super weird!


    Jin (aka Carrie back in the days)

    1. What a coincidence! Of course I remember you. You had this one floppy hat that you would often wear.

      What are you doing in cooking now? Do you have a blog or facebook I can follow?