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Desserts

Butterscotch budino with caramel sauce

Butterscotch budino with caramel sauce
Ken Hively / Los Angeles Times

Technically, it's just pudding. But mention the word budino to an Italian chef and eyes light up, chattering hands dance through the air and unabashed creativity is unfurled. "Budino is BUDINO! Its big flavor hits your palate at once, so ... Read more

Total time: About 45 minutes | Serves 10

Butterscotch budino

  • 3 cups heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 egg
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 5 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 5 tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons dark rum

Step 1In a large bowl, combine the cream and milk and set aside.

Step 2In a large heavy-bottomed pot, combine the brown sugar, one-half cup water and salt over medium-high heat. Cook to a smoking, dark caramel, about 10 to 12 minutes. Sugar will smell caramelized and nutty and turn a deep brown.

Step 3Immediately whisk the cream mixture carefully into the caramel to stop the cooking (the mixture will steam and the sugar will seize). Bring the mixture to a boil and reduce the heat to medium.

Step 4In a medium bowl, whisk together the egg, egg yolks and cornstarch. Temper the hot caramel cream into the egg mixture by adding a cupful of caramel at a time, whisking constantly, until half is incorporated. Pour the egg mixture back into remaining caramel, stirring constantly with a whisk until the custard is very thick and the corn starch is cooked out, about 2 minutes.

Step 5Remove the custard from the heat and whisk in the butter and rum.

Step 6Pass the custard through a fine mesh strainer to remove any lumps and divide among 10 (6-ounce) ramekins leaving one-half inch at the top. Cover with plastic wrap and chill several hours or up to three days.

Caramel sauce and assembly

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/8 vanilla bean, scraped
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons corn syrup
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons fleur de sel
  • 1/4 cup whipping cream
  • 3/4 cup creme fraiche

Step 1In a medium saucepan, heat the cream and vanilla over medium heat, until simmering, about three minutes. Add the butter, turn off the heat and set aside.

Step 2In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine the corn syrup and sugar. Add enough water to make a wet sandy texture, about one-fourth cup. Cook over medium-high heat, swirling the pan just slightly to gauge the caramelization, until the sugar becomes a medium amber color, about 10 minutes.

Step 3Remove the caramel from heat, carefully whisk the cream mixture into the caramel (be very careful -- it will steam and bubble). Whisk to combine. Place the pan in a large bowl of ice water to cool.

Step 4In a chilled bowl with a wire whisk, beat the whipping cream until it begins to thicken. Add the creme fraiche; whip until thick and fluffy.

Step 5Before serving, warm the sauce over medium heat. Spoon one tablespoon on each budino, sprinkle with one-eighth teaspoon fleur de sel and add a dollop of cream topping.

Note: From Nancy Silverton and pastry chef Dahlia Narvaez of Mozza.

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