Crema Catalana

Prep Time
Cook Time
Ready In

"Crema Catalana is similar to Creme Brulee but is from the Catalan region of Spain and has a pedigree from the 14th century. Made differently but the end result is the same. This is a two-part recipe. You make it several hours prior to serving and then it takes a few minutes to get it ready to serve. This recipe is from the Toledo Restaurant at Walt Disney World. Cooking time does not show several hours of cooling/chilling time."

Original recipe yields 6 servings


  • Serving Size: 1 (425.5 g)
  • Calories 1050.6
  • Total Fat - 68.6 g
  • Saturated Fat - 25.5 g
  • Cholesterol - 2650 mg
  • Sodium - 247.3 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate - 63.8 g
  • Dietary Fiber - 1.1 g
  • Sugars - 45.1 g
  • Protein - 42.7 g
  • Calcium - 471.6 mg
  • Iron - 6.9 mg
  • Vitamin C - 2.2 mg
  • Thiamin - 0.5 mg

Step 1

Place lemon zest in a medium saucepan with milk. Split vanilla bean in half and scrape seeds into milk or add vanilla extract. Add cinnamon stick and 1/2 cup of sugar.

Step 2

Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until milk reaches a temperature of 200F. Remove from heat and cover. Steep at room temperature for 2 hours.

Step 3

While milk is cooling, whisk together egg yolks, cornstarch and remaining 1/4 cup of sugar together in a large mixing bowl until smooth. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Step 4

Strain cooled milk mixture into a clean saucepan and bring to a boil over medium to low heat. Turn off heat.

Step 5

Slowly pour a soup ladle full (1/2 cup) of hot milk mixture into egg yolk mixture, whisking constantly. Now turn around and slowly pour the egg yolk mixture into the milk mixture, whisking constantly. Turn heat to low and cook, whisking constantly until thick (about 5 minutes). Remove from heat.

Step 6

Place 4 ounces of custard into oven-proof ramekins. Refrigerate covered for 2 or more hours.

Step 7

To serve, gently blot top of each ramekin with paper towel to remove any condensation. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon of sugar on top of each Crema Catalana. Caramelize using a butane culinary torch.

Step 8

To caramelize in the oven, preheat oven to high broil. Place sugar-topped chilled ramekins on baking sheet. Broil for 3-5 minutes. Monitor carefully until sugar has melted and a crispy brown crust has formed.

Step 9

Serve with 3-4 orange segments.

Tips & Variations

  • A culinary torch (optional)
  • 6 oven-proof ramekins (4 ounce size)
  • Candy thermometer or instant read thermometer