Grab your apron and kitchen torch and enjoy.
RECIPE COURTESY OF MERRIMAN’S HAWAII COOKBOOK. Available for purchase here: merrimanshawaii.com/cookbook/
Serves 6 to 8
3 cups heavy cream
½ cup granulated sugar
10 egg yolks
1 ½ teaspoons coconut extract
6-12 teaspoons granulated sugar, for topping
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.
Place cream in a saucepan and bring just to a boil over medium heat, stirring frequently to prevent cream from sticking to the bottom of the pan. In a bowl, whisk together sugar and egg yolks. Pour one-third of the hot cream into the egg mixture and whisk to combine, then slowly pour egg mixture into the remaining heavy cream, whisking constantly. (If you add all the hot cream to the egg mixture at once, the eggs will scramble, but adding a small amount of the cream first, warms the eggs more gradually and prevents scrambling.) Add coconut and vanilla extracts, and mix.
Pour custard into ramekins or ovenproof bowls. Place ramekins into a roasting pan and add ¼ inch water to the pan. Place pan in the oven and bake for 45 minutes: remove and chill in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.
SUGAR CRUST: TORCH METHOD
Remove custards from the refrigerator. Sprinkle the tops of each with 1 to 2 teaspoons sugar to cover evenly. Using a kitchen torch, heat sugar until caramelized. Refrigerate, uncovered, until a hard crust forms.
SUGAR CRUST: BROILER METHOD
Remove custards from the refrigerator. Sprinkle the tops of each with 1 to 2 teaspoons sugar to cover evenly. Preheat the broiler to high. Place chilled ramekins in a roasting pan, add ½ inch ice water to the pan (the water keeps the cream from cooking) and place under the broiler for 5 to 8 minutes, watching closely, until sugar is caramelized. Refrigerate, uncovered, until hard crust forms.