Flan is one of my favorite desserts. This is a lighter, silkier version compare to the classic Spanish flan. This 5 ingredient recipe is easy to make, but taste very sophisticated. When my mother was ill and had no appetite, this was my go-to item that’s easy to go down and yet packed with protein in a few bites.
For Caramel Sauce:
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup water
For Flan Mixture:
- 1 cup whole milk (do not use non-fat or low fat)
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 3/4 cup light cream
- 1/2 vanilla bean, split lengthwise (or substitute by 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract)
- 3 large eggs
- 2 large yolks
- 5 tablespoons sugar
- 1 pinch of salt
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Position rack in center of oven.
- Combine milk, light and heavy cream and salt in heavy medium saucepan.
- Scrape seeds from vanilla bean into cream mixture; add bean. (If you are using vanilla extract instead, add vanilla extract to cream mixture) Bring to simmer over medium heat. Remove from heat and let steep 30 minutes.
- Combine 1 cup sugar and 1/3 cup water in another heavy medium pan. Stir over low heat until sugar dissolves.
- Increase heat to high and cook without stirring. Swirling pan occasionally, cook until syrup turns deep amber. About 8-10 minutes
- Quickly pour caramel into a large 12-inch ramekin. Working very fast, tilt ramekin to coat all sides.*
- Set ramekins into a baking pan (at least 13 inches wide and 2 inches deep).
- Whisk egg yolks and 5 tablespoons sugar in a medium bowl. Wisk in remaining 3 eggs until just blended.
- Temper the egg mixture by adding 1-2 tablespoon of cream mixture in the egg mixture. Gradually and gently whisk remaining cream mixture into egg mixture without creating lots of foam.
- Pour mixture into prepared ramekin.
- Creat a water-bath in the baking pan by pouring water halfway up sides of ramekins.
- Bake until centers of flans are gently set, about 60 minutes. Test with a toothpick. If toothpick comes out clean, the flan is ready.
- Transfer flans to rack let cool for about an hour. Chill in refrigerator until cold, about 6 hours.
- To serve, run small sharp knife around flan to loosen. Turn over onto a deep plate and shake gently.
- Carefully lift off ramekin allowing caramel syrup to run over flan. For variation, garnish with berries.
- Flan taste even better when it’s chilled overnight and can be made up to 2 days ahead.
* To make coating the inside of the ramekin with caramel easier, warm ramekin by letting it sit in a bath of hot water. But even if it doesn’t coat perfectly, don’t worry. The heat from baking will help thin out and even out the caramel in the baking process.