Hi, Wicca here! You may have heard that I’m a dessert fanatic with a discriminating palate (as in “I want the world”), particularly when it comes to Asian flavours. Guilty as charged…
Dennis the Foodie likes to see me happy (I’m a lucky gal) so he’s mentioned Crackle Creme a few times before but I was cynical about the degree to which something as inherently decadent as creme brulee could be elevated. Also didn’t want my pandan dreams to be dashed by that ghastly green artificial “screwpine” (no joke) flavouring agent masquerading as real pandan extract.
I have an egg everyday because it’s good nutrition, especially for the brain, but mostly because I find the rich creamy yolk divine. And let’s face it, creme brulees are a heavenly marriage between egg yolks and cream.
I admire Daniel Wong, the creme brulee master of Crackle Creme, for having the guts to hone his offerings to a few choice items, and only desserts and hot drinks at that. I’d love to see more dessert-dedicated places around town other than bubble tea joints with customary quick ‘n dirty snacks like condensed milk on toast.
Yeah yeah yeah…vanilla, Earl Grey, salted caramel…YEESSSS…PANDAN COCONUT, DURIAN. My greedy sweet tooth had hardly settled down when I saw JASMINE, HOJICHA, OSMANTHUS. Daniel promptly whipped open a jar filled with tiny yellow osmanthus petals and I had a sniff. Not a floral fragrance as you might expect but more “fruity like peach with a hint of passionfruit”.
I felt sorry for my lunch mates as soon as I saw that my already glacial decision-making ability would be further tested by the option of choosing a flight of three creme brulee flavours. Now I can have my own flight of deliciousness like Dennis the Foodie and his frequent flights of beer.
Must come back to try one of these babies.
Great, a cool-looking light fixture to distract me from the all-important which-dessert-would-make-me-happiest decision.
I was relieved when our adventurous lunch mate chose the durian creme brulee for herself because I knew she’d be sweet enough to let me have a taste. I’m from Vietnam so durian is in my blood.
I then resigned myself to the fact that one creme brulee per day was probably an unwritten rule for someone of a certain…age. So, Pandan Coconut it is.
Before I even cracked the caramel top, I could smell the familiar, distinctive aroma of fresh pandan extract. When people ask me what pandan tastes like, I never know what to say. It’s the extract of the pandan leaf so if you’ve ever had sticky rice wrapped in a banana leaf, it’s sorta comparable I guess. Pandan is often paired with coconut in the Vietnamese desserts that I grew up with so my inner child was prepared to be delighted.
Unlike Dennis the Foodie, I don’t believe in dainty lady-like bites.
The pandan creme brulee was surprisingly light. Daniel said that he used a lighter cream which made sense because you want the rich coconut taste to shine through and the whole thing wasn’t too eggy. The texture was velvety without being cloying. In my mind, Daniel has achieved a perfect balance with these humble yet exquisite ingredients.
It was also a positive sign that my nose promptly detected the durian funk from this creme brulee.
I had durian gelato from La Casa Gelato many moons ago (it was the only one with the lid over it LOL). I remember straining to savour the durian flavour and being left with a craving for straight-up durian. However, Daniel again managed to deliver a durian punch without the distinctive richness of each ingredient clashing.
We (more like I) tried a sample of the jasmine tea flavour. Wowsers! It was aggressively flavoured which is how I prefer things to taste. The heady perfumey fragrance and delicately bitter finish of a high-quality jasmine tea enveloped by a rich creamy cloud of eggy goodness.
“It’s good to dine with people whose rich food threshold is lower than yours,” said I as I left happy. 🙂