I think we're all intimately acquainted with the difficult part of holiday meals. You know - the days and days of planning; the work of preparation; the mad rush getting everything on the table at the same time; the worry about whether the hot dishes are hot enough and the cold stuff cold and stays cold so there's not a bathroom stampede or run on TP later; setting the table; picking just the right flowers; chilling the wine; making sure Auntie Jo who absolutely hates her brother John's wife is sitting no where near her so another family war is averted and then it's all over in about 20 minutes flat, except for the clean up that is. Now where's the justice in that?
We didn't have to deal with any of that this year because glory be - it was just the two of us. Our juicy little Cider and Maple Brined Turkey courtesy of November's Cooking Light, came off the Weber rotisserie after 3 short hours a mahogany colored perfectly cooked wonder of talent and ingenuity. The sides were perfect, the gravy hot and bubbly and the apple cranberry compote a perfect jewel toned addition to the loaded plate.You're looking at the Big Guy's - mine was just a trifle smaller.
Clean up was accomplished in record time, leftovers stowed for enough meals to last most of the weekend and a bottle of lovely Pinot Noir savored to the last drop before we tucked into the creamy, rich and gingery creme brulee. Gosh darn it, I think we might be on to something!
Ginger Crème Brulee (adapted from Fine Cooking Magazine)
2 cups heavy cream
3 tablespoons minced fresh ginger
6 tablespoons granulated sugar, divided
1-1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
5 egg yolks
Granulated sugar for garnish
Heat cream, ginger and 2 tablespoons of sugar, vanilla and salt in a small saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly until sugar has dissolved. Do not boil. Cover pot and allow to steep for 20 minutes. Meanwhile preheat oven to 350 and boil kettle full of water. Arrange 4 ramekins in a pan with 2 inch sides. With a whisk, beat egg yolks with remaining quarter cup of sugar until yolks are light in color. Gradually add cream to egg yolks, whisking lightly to combine. Put mixture through a fine mesh sieve into a large pitcher or 4 cup measure, and then pour evenly into ramekins. Fill baking dish with water half way up sides of ramekins and carefully move pan to oven. Bake for 30 minutes or until custards are cooked but still “jiggle” in the center. When cooked immediately remove from water bath and place on wire racks to cool. When room temperature cover and refrigerate until very cold (can be prepared several days in advance). Just before serving, sprinkle 1 tablespoon of sugar on top of each ramekin and using a kitchen torch, brulee until caramelized. Serves 4. Download Ginger Creme Brulee