Jerusalem Artichoke and Lemon Thyme Crème Brulee

Maria Elia gets adventurous with Jerusalem artichokes, lemon thyme and rich creamy custard...
By Maria Elia
Jerusalem Artichoke and Lemon Thyme Crème Brulee
  • Rating:
  • Serves: 6
  • Cook Time: 30 minutes
  • Prep Time: 20 minutes
  • Effort: medium


For the artichokes

  • 500 g jerusalem artichokes
  • 50 g unsalted butter
  • 50 g caster sugar
  • 2 vanilla pods, split, seeds removed
  • 100 ml milk

For the crème brulee

  • 8 egg yolks
  • 120 g caster sugar
  • 500 ml double cream
  • 2 tsp lemon thyme
  • 2-4 tsp demerara sugar


1. Peel and thinly slice the artichokes. Melt the butter in a saucepan, and add the artichokes. Cook, over a low heat until golden, before adding the sugar and vanilla seeds.

2. Cook for about 10 minutes until the artichokes are caramelised. Pour in the milk and simmer for about15 minutes - until the artichokes are really soft. Mash, and push the artichokes and cooking liquid through a fine sieve - you should have a smooth puree. Set aside.

3. Whisk the yolks and sugar until pale and creamy. Bring the cream and lemon thyme to the boil, and pour the hot liquid onto the egg mixture. Whisk, to combine everything together and add the artichoke puree.

4. Preheat the oven to 150C/gas 1. Line a roasting tin with a tea towel - this stops the ramekins from moving around and holds them in place when you carry the tin to the oven.

5. Fill 6 ramekins (each with a capacity to hold 125ml liquid) to the brim with custard and place in the roasting tin. Fill the tin with enough hot water to reach two-thirds of the way up the sides of each ramekin. Loosely cover with foil and cook for about 20 minutes, until the custard is just set.

6. Remove the ramekins from the water and leave to cool. Refrigerate for 3 hours, or preferably overnight.

7. Sprinkle each brûlée with a teaspoon or two of Demerara sugar. Caramelise the sugar with a blowtorch, or place the ramekins under a hot grill, for a minute. Cool slightly before serving. This dessert goes well with parsnip ice cream.

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