One of the simplest and best desserts I know. My creamy coffee pots are based on food writer Patricia Wells’ lemon version, wherein fresh lemon or lime juice replaces the wincingly strong coffee below (added to the sugar—upped to 1/2 cup in the lemon case—rather than boiled with the milk). Both ways, they are unsurpassed: polished in flavor and sublimely smooth in texture.
- 1Heat the oven to 325°F. Bring the cream and coffee to a boil in a saucepan. Meanwhile, beat the sugar and egg yolks together in a bowl until light and fluffy. If you’d thought of adding a shot of alcohol or other flavoring, this is the time.
- 2Slowly pour the scalded coffee milk into the egg mixture, whisking constantly. Strain into six 1/2-cup ramekins. Skim off any foam that forms on top (if it bothers you). Set the ramekins into a baking dish and pour around boiling water to come halfway up their sides.
- 3Bake until just set, about 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool, then refrigerate for several hours, or overnight, before serving.
Beverage pairing: Niepoort 10 Years Old Tawny, Portugal. This simple but satisfying dessert would be accentuated by something complex and sweet. The nutty, toffee, and spice-inflected tastes of this tawny port will merge addictively with the cream and coffee of the dessert.
This recipe, while from a trusted source, may not have been tested by the CHOW food team.