Snowball Crème Brûlée

Have you ever watched a cooking reality show and wished you could participate, but without the crying, alcoholism, or life-shortening stress?

Snowball Creme Brulee

Well, I certainly know I have, and I decided to do something about it!  Welcome to my inaugural Top Chef Just Desserts Elimination Challenge …. Challenge!  The purpose of this challenge is to re-create the weekly Top Chef Just Desserts elimination challenges at home, and anyone can participate.  Just make something that is in keeping with the spirit of that weeks Elimination Challenge on Top Chef Just Desserts, post it to your blog, and email or Tweet me the link no later than 9am Wednesday morning.  I will be posting my recipe as well as a round-up of all the other people participating.  That is it!

Snowball Creme Brulee

The elimination challenge last week was to create a dessert inspired by a cocktail.  I wanted to really make this a challenge so I went with my favorite holiday – The Snowball.  I first learned of the Snowball from Nigella Lawson from her cookbook Nigella Express, but the spirit used, Advocaat, is difficult to find.  Some digging in the net led me to a handy substitute in Rompope, a sort of Mexican version of egg nog with out the spices.   To make a Snowball you mix 1 part Rompope, 3 parts lemon-lime soda, and a twist of fresh lime.   It sounds strange, but let me tell you it is heaven, surprisingly refreshing, and not too strong.  I drink them while wrapping gifts and after three (or four) I am still able to do a passable job of it.

Snowball Creme Brulee

The Snowball, I decided, would make a perfect creme brulee.  I took a basic recipe for creme brulee, here, and made some adjustments.  First, I substituted 1/4 of the cream for Rompope.  Rompope is not terribly strong, and it has a mild flavor so I decided to use more than a few tablespoons so the flavor would stand out.  Second, I added the zest from one lime.  Snowballs have a lovely bright citrus tang that cuts the rich liqueur.  Lime zest works perfectly in that capacity.   Give the Snowball a try, then give this recipe a try.  It is truly the best of the cocktail in dessert form.

Snowball Crème Brûlée    Yield 4-6 servings

1 1/2 cups heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup Rompope
1/3 cup sugar, divided
3 egg yolks
Zest of one lime
1 teaspoon vanilla

Heat the oven to 325 F.

Snowball Creme Brulee

Place the cream in a small pot over medium-high heat and bring to a boil.  Turn off the heat and allow to cool slightly.

Snowball Creme Brulee Snowball Creme Brulee

In a medium bowl whisk together the Rompope, 1/4 cup of the sugar, egg yolks, lime zest, and vanilla.  Slowly pour in the cream, whisking constantly.

Snowball Creme Brulee

Pour the mixture into 4 (8-ounce) ramekins that have been placed in a roasting pan or baking pan.  Pour hot water half way up the sides of the ramekins and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until firm around the edges yet still slightly wobbly in the center.  Remove the ramekins carefully from the pan and refrigerate for at least four hours, or overnight.

When ready to serve sprinkle the remaining sugar evenly over the ramekins.  With a torch, or under a broiler, melt the sugar until it turns amber in color and all the sugar is melted.  Be careful not to scorch the sugar.  Place the ramekins in the refrigerator for two minutes to harden the sugar.

Snowball Creme Brulee


Snowball Creme Brulee

Elimination Challenge …. Challenge Round-up

Lara at Food. Soil. Thread. created Hennessy Spiked Apples and Chai Spiced Panna Cotta … It looks AMAZING!

Robyn at Earthbound Chronicles made some yummy looking Tequila Lime Cupcakes!

© 2010, Evil Shenanigans. All rights reserved.

Author: Kelly

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  • YUM!

  • Yum! That looks incredible! I haven’t had a chance to watch Top Chef Just Desserts, but I want to. I need to catch the reruns!!

  • I just love creme brulee in any form. And this one looks particularly fantastic

  • Oh my gosh. I need this in my life!

  • Oh my. Have Just Desserts on TIVO; guess I need to now watch a couple of those episodes!

    Brilliant idea and lovely execution.

  • Yum! Funny I had a dream I made the no-bake Creme Brulee from and I got eliminated. Yours are fabulous!

  • So creative… I love creme brulee and this is such a unique spin. I’m hoping I’ll have time to participate in next week’s challenge!

  • it’s probably best if i don’t make this. trust me, i’d eat the whole batch 😉

  • Creme Brulee is my all-time favorite dessert to eat & make and this sounds like a fabulous version!

    I’ll be watching TC-JD tonight & I’ll try to play next week, too. What a great idea!

  • I don’t watch the show (I don’t watch any reality show!) but sure I’m watching these creme brulee very well and I’m drooling,

  • I love the idea for these challenges! Genious!! Your creme brulee would have wowed the Top Chef judges too, I’m sure 🙂 I wonder what they’ll have to do tonight… we’ll have to stay tuned!

  • I can’t even begin to describe how much I love these challenges! I am totally going to join in. Hmmmm, a cocktail. I think I’m going to go with a mojito. I know, a pudding mojito! I will have to figure out the recipe and complete it this weekend. Fun!

  • I *love* this idea! Getting me organized enough to join in could be a challenge…

    I just bought a groupon today to the place with the best creme brulee, never made it at home before.

  • Oh wow! Your’s looks delicious! Thank you for putting this together. I think once we get into the swing of things it’ll be a fun challenge each week.

  • OMG! This looks soooooo good!

  • Thanks for putting the challenge idea together! Your dessert looks so good. Its funny because I was going to make eggnog panna cotta and then changed my mind at the last minute!

  • What a great idea to mimic Top Chef Just Desserts! I hope I can play too! 🙂

  • A winner! Even the name conjures lovely thoughts.

  • OMG I am SO in!!! I love Top Chef and Just Desserts has been needing to happen for a while. What a great idea! I’ll make something for next week!

  • I’ve never had a snowball before but I’d have that in a heartbeat.

  • I’ve always wanted to make creme brulee. It’s probably one of my favorite dessert next to the tiramisu and red velvet cake. 🙂

  • This desert look like a winner to me!

  • Joy

    That looks great!

  • Love love love this idea! Can’t wait to watch tonight’s episode so I can come up with something for next week!

  • Looks fantastic. and I love the show, though it makes me so tired to watch all the drama! Just cook me tasty treats!

  • That looks yummy! I have been looking for recipes that require some ramekins I bought a few weeks ago. Thanks!

  • This looks delicious.

  • Looks fantastic!

  • I love creme brulee and I love limes, so this sounds like the perfect combo. Never had a snowball before but that sounds yummy too. Gonna have to give both a try.

  • Oh yum. I’m loving this series. Off to download the episode!!

  • That is definitely a good reason to make a dessert!


  • I love creme brulee but I always was afraid of making it in my own kitchen, don’t know why.
    yours look so yummy

  • I love your Top Chef Just Desserts challenge idea! And this looks decadent. Yum.

  • Pingback: top chef just desserts elimination challenge …. challenge! « the twisted chef()

  • Mjfluke

    I did a variation on this. I just made up the creme brulee in almost it’s normal form but then added lime zest and juice to bring a delicious tangy flavor to it. My husband who doesn’t love “pudding” but loves lime and ate two of the five!

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