Heat a flat bottomed oven proof dish.
Put in 1.5 tbsp sugar with a few drops of water, over gentle flame, lightly swirling from time to time to form a golden caramel.
Be mindful to only swirl the dish – DO NOT stir as this could candy the caramel.
Set aside for the caramel to harden.
Beat the eggs lightly and add into the milk.
Stir in the sugar and vanilla essence till all the sugar is dissolved.
Pour this mixture into the dish over the caramel, and seal with foil.
Preheat the oven to 200 deg.
Place the sealed dish in a water bath in the oven and bake for around 45 mins.
Remove from the oven, uncover and place on a rack to cool.
Once the dish is cool to the touch, transfer to the fridge.
Let it cool in the fridge for 2-3 hours.
Release the sides from the dish with the help of a knife.
Hold a plating dish to the brim of the baking dish and overturn the custard.
Cut into portions and serve cold.