Salmon and Basil Crème Brûlée

Salmon and Basil Crème Brûlée Recipe

Fresh herbs enhance salmon in this pretty dish. Accompany with sliced tomatoes with fresh mozzarella cheese, fresh asparagus, and warm, crusty bread.–Lou Seibert Pappas

Salmon and Basil Crème Brûlée Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 25 M
  • 1 H
  • 6 servings


  • 12 ounces salmon fillet
  • 1/3 cup dry vermouth or dry white wine
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 green onions (including tops) or shallots, finely chopped
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 3/4 cup heavy (whipping) cream
  • 3/4 cup half-and-half or whole milk
  • 1/3 cup minced fresh basil
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh Italian parsley
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh chives
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 24 teaspoons grated Parmesan cheese, for topping


  • 1. Preheat the oven to 275°F (135°C). Place the salmon in a large skillet with the vermouth or wine, cover, and simmer over medium-low heat for 5 to 6 minutes, or until the salmon barely flakes with a fork. Remove from the heat. In a small saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat and saute the onions or shallots until soft, about 5 minutes. Remove from the heat. Flake the salmon, discarding any skin and bones.
  • 2. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs and egg yolks together until pale in color. Whisk in the cream and half-and-half or milk. Stir in the salmon, onions or shallots, basil, parsley, chives, salt, and pepper.
  • 3. Place six standard-size flan dishes in a baking pan. Divide the custard mixture among the dishes. Pour warm water into the pan to come halfway up the sides of the dishes. Bake in the oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the center of each custard still jiggles slightly. Remove from the oven and lift the dishes from the hot water. Place the dishes on a baking sheet.
  • 4. Evenly sprinkle 4 teaspoons Parmesan cheese over each custard. Using a hand-held blowtorch, brown the cheese (see Note).


  • Use caution and follow the manufacturer’s instructions when using a blowtorch. Searing one dish at a time, hold the blowtorch about 4 inches from the top of the dish, moving the torch constantly so that the sugar (or cheese) browns evenly. Be especially careful if the custard contains alcohol, as it can cause the sugar to sputter. When using a broiler to caramelize, place the dishes about 4 inches from the heat source. Watch carefully and turn the baking sheet holding the dishes if necessary to brown the custards evenly. Wear oven mitts when broiling and handling the baking sheet in the oven.
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Testers Choice

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Dan Kraan

Jun 22, 2009

My 6-ounce ramekins did a fine job of producing a wonderful crème brûlée. I used wild-caught Coho salmon. Its ruddy-orange meat added a nice splash of colour and, enhanced somewhat by the vermouth, an earthy but mild flavour to the mix. There is a great combination of flavours (I used the shallot option), and the presentation of these is always a favourite. Perhaps 4 1/2 inches is a bit too wide of a ramekin to get a thick enough layer of grated cheese over the brûlée surface, so the next time I may use a bit more cheese to get a thicker crust before browning.

Testers Choice
Eydie Desser

Jun 22, 2009

Delicious and unique. This recipe is a surprising and inventive take on brûlée and was appreciated by all my tasters.

Testers Choice
Lila Ferrari

Jun 22, 2009

The recipe was easy to assemble and directions were clear. The baking time was off a bit but the end result was delicious. It was a simple but sophisticated dish. The salmon wasn’t overpowered by the basil, the proportion was just right. The texture was smooth on the palate. The parmesan topping didn’t add much, though. I’d would make this again.

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