Saturday, July 31, 2010

Tapioca Pearls, Rose Water, & Vanilla Bean Infused Cream Brulee

I am extremely stoked about this project. Tanantha is a creative, smart, inquisitive cook; she is the perfect partner for this endeavor. We took a single ingredient, Rose Water, and both made original recipes.

Please hop over and check out her unique blog, you will surly not be disappointed. My end of this bargain is over at…

I Just Love My Apron

Welcome to Tanantha Actually Cooks Saturday

Rose water is one of the ingredients I’m not familiar with. It’s new to me and I was first introduced by Lazaro. I’m not sure how it started but I think I saw it as one of the ingredients he used in his food. And here we are, presenting our rose water recipes to each other.

The creative Lazaro initiated the joint dessert post where we will post each other’s recipe on the same day. I for sure didn’t hesitate to take it on. My curiosity and excitement to experiment had gone up since we decided to give it “a go” and do it. Lazaro was kind enough to send me his rosewater infused cookies recipe to me as a guide.

The first thing I did after I purchased was to smell and taste. Now I know why it’s called rose water! It’s a rose and water mixture. Ha. It has a strong taste and smells like perfume roses. I then thought of Moroccan and Indian restaurants. Hmm.. How am I going to incorporate this into my dessert? I went online, read a cookbook, and did some research. I ended up with this cream brulee for my own version. I’m pretty sure it doesn’t exist until now (smile). Not only does rose water make it special, but also tapioca pearls I found at my favorite Asian store does too. It adds interesting texture and fun to the cream brulee. I added vanilla bean to cut down the strong taste of rose water. You can’t go wrong with vanilla in dessert!

Okay, I admit that it took me a while to find the right taste. I tried so many times that I remembered every step, ingredients, and measurements (so I finally got the right adjustment). I tried from adding rice, to cinnamon, to caramel, and then to coconut milk. I changed this, added that, and adjusted it, voila.

I have to thank my husband for being a tester. At the end, he was like “again?” “can I not?” hahaha.

I used small ramekins instead of a regular size because crème brulee is rich and fatty in general. Sorry if you’re on a diet. Using small ramekins like me is a great way to treat yourself and you won’t intake too much cholesterol. Hey, c’mon we all need dessert time in life!

I hope you try and enjoy it because it tastes good! Thanks Lazaro for another great idea.

Pearl Tapioca, rose water, and vanilla beans infused Cream Brulee
Yield: 4 small ramekins or 2 regular ramekins

3 eggs yolk
14/ cup white sugar
2 tbs tapioca pearls
1 cup soy milk
¼ tsp cinnamon powder
small pinch of salt
1 cup heavy cream
½ vanilla pod
¼ tsp rose water
8 tsp raw sugar

Casserole baking tray
4 small ramekins or 2 regular ramekins
Hot water


• To prepare tapioca pearls, heat up a small saucepan, add 1 cup of soy milk and 2 tbls tapioca, cinnamon powder and salt. Bring the milk to boil, then lower it to simmer for about 20 mins with a lid on or until cooked. When they’re cooked, they will turn clear or somewhat clear. They’re called pearls because they are white and round like pearls (see photo). The tapioca will suck all the liquid to dehydrate itself. If the liquid is dry out and tapioca isn’t cooked through, add 2tbs soy milk incremental.

• Divide equally to ramekins.

• Preheat oven to 300 F and boil water on a stove.

• Heat up another saucepan for crème brulee. Add heavy cream. Scrap off vanilla beans and add to the milk pot. I used every single thing of the bean pod so after scraping off he beans I dumped vanilla pod to the milk pot too.

• Add rose water and let it infuse under low heat for about 10 mins.

• In a meantime, whisk egg yolk with sugar until soft and smooth. It should have a light yellow color and creamy.

• Turn off the heat. Spoon out a vanilla pod. Pour the milk mixture into egg mixture slowly and gradually. Whisk well.

• Pour the mixture into tapioca pearl ramekins.

• Place them on a tray. Pour hot water in a tray until it reaches a quarter to the top of ramekins

• Place them in an oven. Bake for 45 mins until it’s set. It should be a little wobble.

• Let it cool in a roasting tray/pan. When ready to serve, sprinkle 2 tsp of raw sugar on each ramekin.

• If you have a torch, brulee it until golden brown. If you don’t, no worries. Here’s what I did. Preheat broiler to hi heat. Place prepared ramekins under a broiler for 2-3 mins. I would say check it every min because It’s burned fast!

• The raw sugar smells incredible and the tapioca pearls make a fun texture. Enjoy!


  1. Tanantha, I absolutely LOVE this! Creme brûlée is one of my favorite desserts but I've never heard of rosewater creme brûlée - genius! I was first introduced to rosewater on Stella's (The Witchy Kitchen) blog. I love how you put an Asian twist to this and added tapioca pearls. I love everything about this recipe my dear. Thank you so much for sharing! Hope you have a lovely weekend.

    Thank you again Lazaro for another wonderful post. I hope you and your Queen are having a lovely weekend as well. Off to read your post over at Tanantha's blog. Oh and woot woot! I'm finally one of the first commenters. I know, I'm so mature.

  2. A very unique Cream Brulee! I too enjoy the addition of tapioca pears (same as sago?).

  3. This is so pretty! Great collaboration guys! :) I love cooking with rosewater, it's a very beautiful, subtle ingredient which makes desserts and sweets sooo luxurious!

  4. How cleaver pretty and unique, I have heard of rose water, never cooked with it, will have to give this one a whirl sometime!

  5. I bet rose water in creme brulee is absolutely delicious! Your photos are gorgeous too...lovely guest post! I'm off to see what you created with rose water, Lazaro!

  6. Hi Tanantha, - GORGEOUS! Though I prefer creme caramel to creme brulee, I think the addition of the pearls is brilliant. I am shy of the rose water because of its intensity, but Lazaro had suggested using it sparingly, kind of like doctor's orders for an ointment prescription.
    And who doesn't like breaking the brulee with a spoon ? Something so satisfying about that. Loves!

  7. T,

    I guess you tamed rose water. Magnificent recipe. Great idea to use the tapioca pearls. Thank you for aggreeing to do this you are a kick-ass culinarian.

  8. I LOVE using edible flowers and herbs! Rose water is rather like lavendar- a little goes a long way as the flavor can be intense. This looks wonderful (I love tapioca!)
    xoxo Pattie

  9. Very clever for sure! I've never cooked with rose water but this is definitely worth trying it!

  10. Yum! Just last weekend I was in a store that had rose water... my mom bought some because she said she has seen recipes that use it. I can't wait to give it a try... great job!

  11. Tanantha, This does look delicious! I love what you came up with for your rose water challenge and that both of your recipes are so unique. I like your photograph featuring such a scrumptious bite of cream brulee, congratulations to both of you :-)

  12. We're getting tired of the ubiquitous creme brulee, on the menu at every restaurant. Your version really jazzes it up! Great idea to include tapioca for another texture. Bravo on this one!

  13. Its been a long time since i've had tapioca. This would be a wonderful way to get reacquainted with it.

  14. Wow Tanantha, this sounds too good. I am crazy about everything here and the addition of the rose water....I can only imagine:)

  15. Beautiful crème brûlée you managed to use some of my favorite ingredients here, the tapioca, rose water, and of course vanilla (I will just forget the cinnamon)! I LOVE this recipe, simply beautiful.

  16. looks absolutely delicious!! I love that you used rosewater!!

  17. What an incredible treat of a recipe. I love rose water and have been cooking up a storm with the tapioca peals, my hubby loves them with chocolate, nuts and liqueur but I had not thought to pair it with rose water. Pure genius!

  18. Very original and delicious Crème brûlée.
    Wishing you a great weekend ♥

  19. creme brulee is one of my favorite desserts. I would love to try this version. so unique and creative!

  20. You and Tamantha both presented beautiful rose water creations! Great job!

  21. what an incredible blend of flavors!! You have taken creme brulee to the next
    great job with this amazing guest post!!
    Thanks to Tanantha and Lazaro!

  22. Brava Tanantha!!! Rose water can be challenging for those unfamiliar with it, but you have more than risen to the challenge! I truly have never seen a creme brulee like yours! Love the addition of pearls. I am a fan of rosewater too, so of course I totally LOVE this!!

  23. I bet the tapioca gives it a very unusual texture.

  24. I wouldn't know how to use rose water either haha.. i love the inclusion of tapioca pearls, very creative!

  25. Mmm I love creme brulee and the rosewater infusion definitely gives it some extra oomph. All of the taste testing was certainly worth it...this looks fantastic!

  26. Lovely creme brulee. It's one of our very favorite desserts to serve company. If they're good and haven't had too much wine, we let them torch their own.

    Thanks for the info on rose water. I'll have to put it on my list for the next time we're in a city shopping at a gourmet market.

  27. Tanantha, how cool! I love how unique the flavors are! And I'm not sure how unique the tapioca pearls are but I for one have never seen them used in such a way. :)

    And Lazaro, I just read about your brother's accomplishment - congratulations to him! :)

  28. Wow...rose water infused cremem brulee and tapioca pearls...very creative!

  29. i love cremm brulee ........yummyyy

  30. Wow, it sure sounds and looks so tasty, tapioca, rose water and creme brulee...beautiful dessert...very unique indeed :-)

  31. Wow. So many ingredients that I know so little about! I need to go to Austin soon to find some rose water and the tapioca pearls intrigue me as well!! Well done! Gorgeous looking desserts!

  32. Thank you everyone. Your comments made my day! Special thanks to you, Lazaro. I'm so glad and it's an honor doing this challenge with you!

  33. Tanantha, I love the addition of rose water and tapioca pearls, this sounds like an incredible desert :)

  34. That looks so great. I can't wait to try it. It is just sad that some of the ingredients are hard to find. I don't think that you buy it in the market so easy.

  35. Tanatha, you just posted one of my all time favorite desserts and you did it perfectly! I sooo wish I could have a bit of that right now. I'll bet the rose water was a beautiful flavor addition to the brulee.

  36. Nice idea on the tapioca. Another way to enjoy creme brulee with less fat & cholesterol would be to use a mix. Inspired Cuisine makes one that's really good and authentic, but with about 1/2 the fat of a traditional recipe, partly because you use milk instead of half the cream.


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