I can never tire of the flavour of this baked custard. So, keep your pumpkin, steam the pumpkin, mash and you’ve got the main ingredient.
Preheat oven to 275 F.
Adjust oven rack to center position.
Butter eight (½ cup) custard cups and set them into a baking dish.
If cooking custards in a metal pan, cover the bottom of the pan with a layer of newspaper to ensure an even temperature on the bottom.
In a large bowl, beat egg yolks until slightly thickened.
Add sugar and mix until dissolved; mix in cream, spices and pumpkin puree and pour mixture into prepared custard cups.
Bring the water for the water bath to a light simmer on top of the stove; carefully pour hot water into the baking pan to come halfway up the sides of the custard cups.
Bake approximately 60 to 90 minutes or until set around the edges but still loose in the center.
The cooking time will depend largely on the size of the custard cup you are using, but begin checking at a half hour and check back regularly.
When the center of the custard is just set, it will jiggle a little when shaken, that’s when you can remove it from the oven.
Remove from oven and leave in the water bath until cooled to room temperature.
Remove cups from water bath, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate at least 2 hours or up to 2 days.
When ready to serve, sprinkle approximately 2 teaspoons of remaining sugar over each crème brûlée.
Use the broiler or a small hand-held torch to brown the sugar.
Hold the torch 4 to 5 inches from the sugar, maintaining a slow and even motion.
Stop torching just before the desired degree of doneness is reached, as the sugar will continue to cook for a few seconds after flame has been removed.
If you don’t have a torch, place crème brûlées 6 inches below the broiler for 4 to 6 minutes or until sugar bubbles and turns golden brown.
Refrigerate crème brûlées at least 10 minutes before serving.
You want the sugar to crisp up and the custard to be warm.
Serve within 1 hour, as topping will deteriorate.
Important to Remember:
The most common mistake people make in baking custard is not putting enough water in the hot-water bath.
The water should come up to the level of the custard inside the cups.
You must protect your custard from the heat.