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Lemongrass Crème Brûlée a Delicious Variation

Chef Liz Thompson and I had lots of fun delivering “Baking with Herbs,” an online cooking demonstration. One of the recipes was a twist on the French classic a Lemongrass Crème Brûlée.

Tasha Anne Powell and Chef Liz Thompson

©Alisa Schulz

In just over an hour, we showed participants how to use fresh herbs and flowers from their garden to infuse sugar, heavy cream and butter to make custards, baked goods, chocolate confections, compound kinds of butter and cocktails syrups! Some of the herbs we used were basil, lavender, rose petals, lemongrass, Tahitian vanilla, and a variety of citrus. These virtual classes are delivered via Zoom and include a package of recipes.

Lemongrass Creme Brulée Making Creme Brulée Tasha Anne Powell and Chef Liz Thompson

Lemongrass Crème Brûlée

Tasha Powell
Crème Brûlée is one of the perfect desserts, although there is way too much “mystery” behind it. The unexpected flavour of lemongrass, in this version, shines through very subtly. Once you make crème brûlée for the first time, you will see that it's easy to make. The recipe is from Chef Liz Thompson.
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Course Dessert
Cuisine French
Servings 8 people


  • 9 oz Egg Yolks
  • 2 3/4 cups heavy cream (35%)
  • 3/4 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 1/2 cup Ground Lemongrass cut into 1 “ pieces**


  • Preheat the oven to 320°F (160°C).
  • Pour the heavy cream into a high-sided stockpot (heavy cream rises fast when boiled); add lemongrass pieces and bring it to a boil. Turn off heat and let sit for 20 minutes to allow for lemongrass flavour to “infuse” into the heavy cream.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk the sugar and egg yolks.
  • Bring the heavy cream back to a boil, turn heat to low. Temper the sugar/egg yolks by adding 1/3 hot, heavy cream at a time very slowly into the sugar/egg mixture and whisk. When all the heavy cream has been added to the sugar/egg yolk mixture, return to the pot and whisk on very low heat for just a minute.***
  • Strain through a fine-mesh strainer to remove minor egg pieces and lemongrass. Place your ramekins into a “hotel pan” or pan with sides at least 4 inches high to accommodate water around the ramekins.
  • Place the pan on a sheet pan and into the oven; carefully pour the mixture with a vessel with a spout such as a Pyrex measuring cup into ramekins close to the top of each. Pour water into the pan to the halfway mark around each ramekin.****
  • Bake for approximately 30 minutes, or until crème brûlée has “set” like custard and does not move when jiggled; do not overcook.
  • Cool, refrigerate overnight and use the next day.
  • To finish, sprinkle granulated sugar on top lightly and burn with a propane torch that can be purchased at your local hardware store.


*When making a crème brûlée with a less “porous” herb than lemongrass that will not soak up the Heavy Cream so much, use 2 1/2 cup Heavy Cream. The chopped lemongrass absorbs a lot of the liquid and must be compensated for.
**Lemongrass can be found at most Asian Markets.
***If you leave the heat on for too long the eggs will "cook," and you will have curdled your crème brûlée!
****This is called a "water bath," if any water gets into the mixture it will not bake properly!
Keyword Dessert, Flan
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!

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Tasha Powell

Tasha Powell is a food stylist and writer who specializes in working with celebrity chefs and leaders in the hospitality industry. She cooks and styles for monographs, cookbooks and Satellite Media Tours, working between North America and Europe. Take a look at her mouthwatering photos on Cooking with a French Twist. Since July 2020, she has offered themed Zoom cooking classes influenced by her travels in France and Morocco. Here are a few:

• Fusion Vegetarian Menu: Cheese Soufflé, Grilled Vegetable Kabobs, Roasted Sweet Potatoes with Lime Crème Fraiche & Floating Islands
• Fall in Provence: Carrot Soup, Seared Duck Breast and Chocolate & Pear Tarte
• 3-Course Gluten-Free Menu: Panisse, Grilled Shrimp & Chocolate Towers with Michelin Star plating techniques
• Food Styling Tips: Apéro Dînatoire, presentation & plating
• 4-Course Gluten-Free Menu: Cauliflower Steaks with Chimichurri Sauce, Zucchini Rollups, Roasted Leek Salad & Chocolate Lava Cakes, Michelin Star plating techniques
• Just Stuffed! Stuffed Aubergines, Tomatoes & Zucchini
• Provençal Cuisine: Baked Ratatouille Tian & Tarte du Soleil
• Add Sparkle, Shimmer, Silver and Gold to Your Culinary Presentations! By Lynn Neuberg of Easy Leaf Products and Chef Tasha Powell

Class listings can be found at Chef Tasha Events

Tasha also arranges culinary tours with Barbara Pitcher in Provence, France, in Marrakech, Morocco, in Sicily, Italy and in Parry Sound, Canada under Pitcher and Powell Cuisine and Culture.

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