crème brûlée

1 qt heavy cream
1 whole vanilla bean
split and scraped
1/2 cup vanilla sugar
6 whole egg yolks
2 qt hot water
1/2 cup vanilla sugar
Collin took Carm to his family's beach house near San Luis Obispo for their one month anniversary. Collin and Carm saw The Slackers, one of Collin's favorite ska bands, and ate dinner at Rosa's. That night, Carm tried crème brûlée for the first time. Collin gave Carm the honor of cracking the crunchy top layer.
Preheat the oven to 325°F.
Place the cream, vanilla bean and its pulp into a medium saucepan set over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat, cover and allow to sit for 15 minutes. Remove the vanilla bean and reserve for another use.
In a medium bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup sugar and the egg yolks until well blended and it just starts to lighten in color. Add the cream a little at a time, stirring continually. Pour the liquid into 6 (7 to 8-ounce) ramekins.
Place the ramekins into a large cake pan or roasting pan. Pour enough hot water into the pan to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Bake just until the crème brûlée is set, but still trembling in the center, approximately 40 to 45 minutes.
Remove the ramekins from the roasting pan and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 3 days.
Remove the crème brûlée from the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes prior to browning the sugar on top. Divide the remaining 1/2 cup vanilla sugar equally among the 6 dishes and spread evenly on top. Using a torch, melt the sugar and form a crispy top. Allow the crème brûlée to sit for at least 5 minutes before serving.
source: Alton Brown's I'm Just Here for the Food