Crema Catalana or Crema de Sant Josep

Crema Catalana or Crema de Sant Josep was traditionally made in Catalonia on the 19th March the feast of St Joseph for the fathers in the family but today it is enjoyed throughout the year and throughout Spain and is one of the oldest and most popular desserts in Spain. The dessert has been noted in Catalan since the 14th century.


1 litre of milk

8 egg yokes

200 g sugar

40 g cornflour

cinnamon stick

piece of lemon rind

Bring the milk, lemon rind and cinnamon stick to the boil in a saucepan, turn off the heat and leave to stand. In a separate bowl mix the egg yolks with the sugar. Sieve the milk to remove all the bits and stir in the cornflour. Pour this mixture into the eggs and sugar and whisk well. Return the pan to the heat and whisking all the time, bring back to the boil then turn off immediately. Pour the cream into individual bowls, (small terracotta bowls are traditional) and leave to cool. Before serving sprinkle the tops with sugar and caramelise under the grill or with a blow torch.

In Spain the hot iron tool used to caramelise the tops of the cream is called La Quemadora.

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