Pots de Crème are like restaurant-grade versions of those pudding packs from your childhood. These little beet custards are luxuriously creamy with earthy undertones, and just sweet enough.
I serve mine with a dollop of refreshing crème fraîche whipped cream cream and crunchy bee pollen and cocoa nibs, which adds texture and compliments the beets.
The secret to pots de crème is the water bath, which insulates the custards from the oven’s heat ensuring a silky, creamy texture. To prevent overcooking, remove the custard when it is just set, and the center still jiggles. Upon first glance, these pots will have a somewhat pallid color. Don’t worry, the color will deepen as it sets up in the fridge.
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Beet Pots de Crème with Crème Fraîche Cream
Beet Pots de Crème
- 2 cups [16 oz] heavy cream
- 1/2 cup [100 g] dark brown sugar
- 1/2 tsp kosher salt
- 1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
- 6 egg yolks
- 1 cup [8 oz] beet juice
- 2 tsp beet powder, for additional color [optional]
Crème Fraîche Whipped Cream
- 8 oz [1 cup] whipping cream
- 4 Tbsp crème fraîche
- Cocoa nibs
- Bee pollen
Preheat the oven to 300°F.
Arrange six 6 oz ramekins in a large, shallow baking pan. Put a large kettle of water on the stove and bring to a boil.
In a 2-quart saucepan, combine the cream, brown sugar, salt, and then scrape the seeds from the vanilla bean into the mixture. Warm the cream over medium heat until small bubbles form around the edges, or 170°F. Remove from heat, cover, and steep for 5 minutes.
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, beet juice, and beet powder (if using) until smooth. Temper the eggs by slowly adding the warm cream, whisking constantly. Strain the custard through a sieve into a large measuring cup.
Divide the egg mixture among the ramekins. Skim away any foam. Fill the baking pan with hot water until it reaches halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Cover tightly with tinfoil and bake until just barely set and the center still wobbles, about 45 minutes. Remove the ramekins from the water bath and transfer to a wire rack to cool. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm.
Just before serving, make the whipped cream. In a cold metal bowl, whip the heavy creme until soft peaks form. Stir in the crème fraîche. Top each pot de crème with a spoonful of cream and a sprinkle of cocoa nibs and bee pollen.