Crema Catalana (Catalan cream) with orange blossom scent recipe

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Crema Catalana (Catalan cream) with orange blossom scent recipe

Last week, I was eagerly awaiting the chance to have one of my all time favourite desserts, a Catalan cream in a city square in Girona. My eagerness was driven by a sublimely subtle dessert in had had in the South of France on the border with Spain several years before. This ‘French' version was made using an orange blossom syrup and after being slightly underwhelmed in Girona, I decided to product my own recipe as close as possible to an ‘Orange Blossom Catalan Cream’ without having access to orange blossoms. This dish is very similar to a French Creme Brûlée but adding 1/2 tbs of cinnamon to the milk / cream mixture making for a slightly spicier variant.


Fresh juice from 1/4 orange (reduce by 50%) with squeeze of lemon juice
500ml of whole milk
500ml of single cream
1 vanilla pod (just seeds)
1/4 orange rind (just the outer orange bit as white bit is bitter)
6 egg yolks
100g sugar
40g cornflour dissolved in 1tbs water


  1. Slowly bring milk & cream to simmer with vanilla seeds, reduced orange juice & orange rind
  2. In separate bowl, gently beat egg yolks with sugar till light in colour.
  3. Add cornstarch & a spoonful of the hot milk to beaten egg yolks.
  4. Remove orange peel from milk mixture & slowly add the egg mixture whilst continually stirring.
  5. Keep stirring over gentle heat till mixture has thickened.
  6. Pour into ramekins & put in fridge to cool overnight.
  7. To serve, sprinkle little brown sugar on top and caramelise with blowtorch or grill.
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