Ever since I was a child I've loved creme caramel. It's a dish that is always served as the "piece de resistance" dessert at any gathering or special occasion. I used to think it was difficult to make until I got the recipe from a friend after I got married and discovered how easy it is to make, and have been making it regularly ever since.
Because we all love it so much I always make a large mold, so the recipe here is for 12 servings but you can easily change it to the size you prefer.
2For the caramel; add the water and sugar to a heavy heat proof mold and bring to boiling on medium high heat.
Stir until the sugar is dissolved then continue boiling till it becomes golden brown. Remove from heat immediately as it burns easily.
It will harden as it cools
3For the custard; heat the milk and sugar stirring till sugar dissolves. Bring to the boil then remove from heat.
4Meanwhile, beat the eggs with the vanilla on the lowest speed so as not to make it frothy. (the less bubbles you have in your custard the smoother it will be)
5Add the hot sweetened milk to the beaten eggs a cup at a time beating all the time at low speed. (you have to be careful to add the hot milk to the eggs and not the eggs to the hot milk, because if you do the eggs start to cook in the heat of the milk and you end up with bits of cooked eggs in your custard)
6Pour the custard mixture into the prepared mold on top of the hardened caramel.
Cover tightly with aluminum foil and place in a hot water bath.
7Bake for 1 1/2 hour. Remove from the oven, cool completely then refrigerate covered for several hours till it is chilled through.
8When ready to serve remove the aluminum foil and run a knife around the side of the mold.
Place a deep flat bottomed serving dish upside down over the mold and holding them both tightly together flip them over.
All that hardened caramel that was covering the bottom of the mold is now a golden brown caramel syrup covering the top of the molded custard and dripping all over the sides.
Enjoy! (I know I will)