Sometimes I do things backwards. Instead of seeing a recipe I like and then wondering what I could make it in, I see a beautiful baking tin, pie plate, or in this case ramekin, and then I go looking for a recipe to suit it.
In this case I came across a recipe for these beautiful Pots de Crème in Sunset magazine. I just loved the sound of chocolate mint and the pretty pale green color of the custard. Who wouldn't like the idea of a custard that tastes like a peppermint patty?
I had never heard of chocolate mint before but I was lucky enough to find a plant at my local farmers' market. This amazing herb comes from the spearmint family and has a purple stem with green leaves. You can use it like any mint plant in drinks, salads, desserts, sauces or as a garnish. I have it growing in a big pot and it has taken off like crazy. I think this is the beginning of a wonderful relationship.
You need to start this recipe earlier in the day if you plan on serving it on the same day since it needs to steep for two hours to infuse the mint flavor, and then it requires chilling after you have made the custard. Other than that it is a very simple dessert that will impress everyone after the first bite.
Chocolate Mint Pots de Crème
(Printer Friendly Recipe)
- 2 cups heavy cream
- 2 cups milk
- 3 ounces (3 big handfuls) chocolate mint sprigs, plus leaves for garnish
- 1 cup sugar
- 8 large egg yolks
- Sweetened whipped cream
- 1/2 cup chocolate shavings
- Heat together cream, milk, and mint in a medium pot over medium heat until mixture starts to simmer.
- Remove from heat, cover, and let steep about 2 hours.
- Preheat oven to 300°F.
- Set 8 ramekins (4 oz. each) in a large roasting pan or baking dish.
- Reheat cream mixture to a simmer; strain into a medium bowl.
- Whisk together sugar and yolks in a large bowl, slowly add cream to yolk mixture, whisking constantly.
- Pour mixture into ramekins, dividing evenly.
- Fill pan with hot water until it reaches halfway up sides of ramekins.
- Cover pan with foil and bake until custards are set and jiggle only slightly in the center, about 30 minutes.
- Remove from oven and let sit in hot water 30 minutes.
- Transfer ramekins to a baking sheet, cover, and chill at least 2 hours and up to 3 days.
- Serve with whipped cream, fresh mint leaves, and chocolate shavings, if desired.
Recipe by Sunset magazine