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.

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Ingredients

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

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Position rack in center of oven.
  2. Combine milk, light and heavy cream and salt in heavy medium saucepan.
  3. 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.
  4. Combine 1 cup sugar and 1/3 cup water in another heavy medium pan. Stir over low heat until sugar dissolves.
  5. Increase heat to high and cook without stirring. Swirling pan occasionally, cook until syrup turns deep amber. About 8-10 minutes
  6. Quickly pour caramel into a large 12-inch ramekin. Working very fast, tilt ramekin to coat all sides.*
  7. Set ramekins into a baking pan (at least 13 inches wide and 2 inches deep).
  8. Whisk egg yolks and 5 tablespoons sugar in a medium bowl. Wisk in remaining 3 eggs until just blended.
  9. 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.
  10. Pour mixture into prepared ramekin.
  11. Creat a water-bath in the baking pan by pouring water halfway up sides of ramekins.
  12. Bake until centers of flans are gently set, about 60 minutes. Test with a toothpick. If toothpick comes out clean, the flan is ready.
  13. Transfer flans to rack let cool for about an hour. Chill in refrigerator until cold, about 6 hours.
  14. To serve, run small sharp knife around flan to loosen. Turn over onto a deep plate and shake gently.
  15. Carefully lift off ramekin allowing caramel syrup to run over flan. For variation, garnish with berries.

Make Ahead

  • Flan taste even better when it’s chilled overnight and can be made up to 2 days ahead.

Tips

* 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.