1Preheat the oven to 160°C, fan 140°C, gas 3. Beat all the ingredients for the crème together in a bowl. Strain through a sieve into a jug; set aside.
2For the caramel, put the sugar and coffee in a heavy-based pan over a medium-high heat and stir to dissolve the sugar. Once dissolved, cook without stirring, swirling the pan occasionally, for 15 minutes. To test if the caramel is ready, drip a little into a ramekin with a spoon. If it hardens quickly, it is ready. If not, cook for a couple more minutes, then retest.
The Vietnamese love crème caramel – it was brought over by the French. This caramel infused with coffee is a delicious twist on the classic
3Once the caramel is ready, pour a thin layer into an 18-20cm cake tin or 8 x 175ml ramekins (enough to cover the base) and swirl around very quickly to coat the base before it sets. Allow to set and harden.
4Pour the crème into the prepared cake tin. If using ramekins, pour about 3cm of the crème into each one. Place the tin/ramekins in a roasting tin; pour in enough water to come halfway up the sides – this is a bain-marie and allows even baking.
5Bake for 20-25 minutes for the individual portions or 40-45 minutes for the large one – they will still have a wobble in the centre that will set on cooling. Remove from the bain-marie, allow to cool, then chill for at least 6 hours or overnight.
6Run a thin knife all around the edge of the tin/ramekins. Turn it upside down on to a dish and tap to help it pop out. The caramel should drizzle down the sides, forming a puddle.
Recipe adapted from My Vietnamese Kitchen by Uyen Luu (Ryland Peters & Small, £16.99). Recipe photograph by Karen Thomas