Caramel Flan

This is a victory post. Let me explain:

The first time I made flan there was a mishap: instead of the hot water going into the ‘water bath’, some of the water made its way into the flan, thus making scrambled eggs in a custard. Failure.

The second time I made fan I made sure to pour the water into the water bath. However, I was too excited when the flan came out of the oven and, instead of waiting for it to completely cool, I cooled the flan a little and then tried to transfer it to a plate. The flan fell apart and so did some of my hopes and dreams. Another failure.

This is the third time I made flan. And to say I was determined for it to “turn out right” is an understatement. I was like a military sergeant going into battle with an electric mixer instead of a machine gun. This flan was going to turn out right. It had to. With the right battle plan, I mean, recipe, I gathered the ingredients and set to work. The ingredients blended beautifully and I didn’t even burn myself making the caramel. Everything was going to be all right.

I shakily placed the flan in the water bath and closed the oven. I tried to wait patiently for the flan to bake, but as the time came closer for it to be done I found myself checking on it every few seconds.

Done. I took the flan out of the oven and let it cool. And then I put it in the fridge. I wasn’t taking any chances. After a few hours I finally decided I needed to overcome the last obstacle standing in the way: getting the flan out of the pan. I took a deep breath and took the flan out of the fridge. I got the serving plate ready and– goggled “how to get flan out of the pan.” Really creative, hu?

I loosened the flan with a butter knife and placed the serving plate on top of the pan. I inverted it and placed it on the counter. Only when the caramel started seeping out of the pan did I finally lift and–tada!! It came out beautifully! It was a success! And now I can rest easy, knowing I’ve finally made a successful flan (even though it did have a few unwanted bubbles…)

Now that you understand the history behind this victory, I’ll share the recipe with you! The original recipe came from About.com. I followed it fairly obediently, except that I cut the sugar in half for the custard. Also, I made the flan in a baking pan instead of the traditional ramekins.  Because of that the baking time was about an hour instead of 45 minutes. And now, without further ado…

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 13 oz cans evaporated milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Method:

Blend the eggs together with a mixer. Then pour the milks in and mix until well combined. Slowly mix in 1/2 cup of the sugar; then add the vanilla extract.

Heat  the remaining 1 cup of the sugar in a pan over medium heat. Constantly stir until the sugar browns and is transformed into caramel. Pour into a baking dish(es).

Quickly mix the custard mixture to make sure it didn’t settle. Pour over the caramel and place the baking dish(es) into a larger baking pan filled about halfway with water. Bake at 325F for about an hour.

Cool the flan and then place in the fridge for about an hour. To get the flan out of the baking pan, run a butter knife around the edge of the flan. If possible, place the serving plate on top of the baking pan and invert. If not possible, quickly flip the baking pan and place on top of the serving plate. Lift and enjoy!

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