Chilean Hass Avocado Creme Brulee with Walnut Crust

Recipe courtesy of Emme Ribeiro, who won first place in the 2011 Chilean Hass Avocado Culinary Student Recipe Contest. Ribeiro's grand prize-winning recipe is a no-cook, contemporary version of the classic French dessert, in which she cleverly uses the actual avocado skins for serving in place of standard ramekins.

  • 6 Chilean Hass avocados, halved and pitted
  • 1 (8oz) container mascarpone cheese
  • 3 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup whole milk
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice
  • 1/2 cup very finely chopped walnuts (2 ounces total)

Using a spoon, scoop avocado out of skin, being careful to keep skin intact. Place the skins on a baking sheet. Set aside.

In a food processor, combine the avocado, cheese, 3 cups of the sugar, milk, and lime juice. Puree until smooth, about 1 minute.

Spoon equal amounts of the avocado mixture among the 12 halves of reserved avocado skins. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate 2 hours or until well chilled.

Preheat broiler. Remove plastic wrap and sprinkle 1 teaspoon of the remaining sugar over each filled avocado half.

Broil 4 inches away from heat source, about 5-6 minutes to brown the sugar and form a caramelized, golden crust. Immediately sprinkle walnuts evenly over the top of the caramelized sugar. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.

Tester’s Note: May use a kitchen torch and place 2 inches above surface to brown the sugar, instead of placing under the broiler.