Monday, May 19, 2008


This is my brother-in-law, Ryan, with his chicken. He has no taste. The man literally can not taste. It happened in a longboarding accident which resulted in a head injury which resulted in a loss of smell which resulted in a loss of taste. Ryan continues to eat pretty much what he ate before the accident (not always. I saw him mix milk and apple juice once, when there was just a little bit left of each. That was nasty, Ryan.)

Anyway, this post is dedicated to Ryan, who I thought of when I ate half of this flan in one afternoon. It had the smoothest texture to ever grace my lips, and the texture of his food is very important to my brother-in-law.
It's also very important to me, so I'll be making this again.

This was my first flan attempt, and it came out pretty well, but the sugar was a bit too caramelized. Next time I will follow America's Test Kitchen's recipe and use half water/half sugar, and hopefully that will eliminate any sugar lumps. Waiting for the sugar lumps to dissolve was the reason I continued cooking past the caramelized peak.

Actually, I don't really know how it is supposed to look or taste, really. I don't eat flan much and never order it at restaurants because I don't love that burnt sugar taste. But somehow the texture made up for it and I found that I had eaten half of the pictured flan, sliver by sliver, in one afternoon.

This recipe made 6 custard cups of flan (they looked adorable, but I took them to a cinco de mayo party, so there are no pictures) plus this breadpan of flan, which would probably serve 5 people or so.

15 egg yolks
2 cans evaporated milk (14 oz
1 1/2 cans condensed milk (12 oz
Aluminum foil

Create burnt sugar: boil 1 C sugar and 1/2 C water over medium-high heat until 300 degrees or straw-colored. lower the heat until its 350 degrees (amber colored). Pour some into the dishes you will be baking your flan in. Work quickly as the sugar will continue cooking in the pan. I used breadpans and custard cups. You might have extra burned sugar.

Flan: Separate yolks. Remove all white as possible. Add evaporated and condensed milk. Mix mixture with a spoon and try not to create bubbles. Strain the mixture with a cheesecloth to remove the excess white part of the egg. Pour into dishes and cover them tightly with aluminum foil.
Create water bath by arranging flan dishes in a deep aluminum pan (ones used for roasting or those used for serving in buffets will do nicely) filled with water halfway of the flan dishes. Add more water in the middle of the cooking time, if needed, to prevent burning of bottom. Cook in oven at 350 F for around 30-40 minutes for smaller flans, and more time for bigger flans The water-bath is more like “steam-cooking” than baking. Insert a toothpick in the center to check if done.Cool in the refrigerator for a few hours.
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1 comment:

Brooke Rane said...

hi holly, you don't me, but...(here comes the long line of 'i know so-and-so who knows...")...ryan and my husband, peter, lived in the brick house together and both studied industrial design. so by way of introduction, HI! and that that's me...i love this blog! and this flan recipe looks amazing, as do the photos. you've inspired me to bake more, although you've got me thinking on that opera cake above. :)