Preheat the oven to 160C/325F/Gas 3. To
make the caramel suace, gently heat the sugar with the water in a small
heavy pan, until the sugar has dissolved. Bring to the boil and boil
rapidly until the syrup turns a rich golden brown.
Quickly and carefully, pour the hot syrup
into six warmed 150 ml/¼ pint ramekins. To make the coffee custard, heat
the milk until almost boiling. Pour over the ground coffee and leave to
infuse for about 5 minutes. Strain through a fine sieve into a jug
(pitcher). In a bowl, whisk the caster sugar, eggs and yolks until light
and creamy. Whisk the coffee-flavored milk into the egg mixture. Pour
into the ramekins.
Put the ramekins in a roasting pan and
pour in enough hot water to come two-thirds of the way up the sides of
the dishes. Bake for 30-35 minutes or until just set. Test by gently
shaking one of the custards; it should wobble like a jelly. Remove the
custards from the hot water and leave to cool.
Chill the coffee custards for at least 3
hours. To turn out, carefully loosen the sides with a metal spatula then
invert on to serving plates. Decorate with spun sugar, if using.
Cook's Tip: To make spun sugar, gently
heat 75 g/3 oz/scant ½ cup caster (superfine) sugar, 5 ml/1 teaspoon
liquid glucose and 30 ml/2 tablespoons water in a heavy pan until the
sugar dissolves. Boil the syrup to 160C/325F, then briefly dip the base
of the pan into cold water. Put a sheet of baking parchment on the work
surface to protect it. Holding two forks together, dip them into the
syrup and flick them rapidly backwards and forwards over an oiled
rolling pin. Store in an airtight container until ready to use.