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Flan: History Of The Mexican Dessert

For many people, dessert is the best part of a meal. There is nothing like devouring a tasty meal and then anxiously awaiting what comes next for dessert. One such dessert that keeps everyone on their toes and anxiously waiting the end of the meal is flan. Flan is a Mexican caramel custard that is a favorite among most people who have tried it.

Not Always A Mexican Dessert

Despite what most people believe, flan is not a traditional Mexican dish. Instead, this beloved delight originated in ancient Rome. During ancient Roman times, the Romans had an excess of eggs and looked to the Greek’s vast familiarity of cooking to cultivate new cooking methods and recipes. One recipe turned out to be a custard dish that came to be known as flan.

Originally, flan was a savory dish unlike the sweet dessert it is known as today. A popular variation of flan back in those times was eel flan. They did, however, have a variation of flan that was seasoned with honey. Flan managed to survive the fall of the Roman Empire and still remained to be custard made from combining crème and eggs. After the Empire fell apart, the custard found its way to Spain where it was turned into sugary custard that was prepared with caramelized sugar added to a mixture of eggs, milk, and sugar. Aside from the Romans and Spanish, the Moors added almonds and citrus to their version of the custard. Today, these are commonly added to the custard for flavoring.

It was not until after Christopher Columbus brought the delicious dessert to America that Mexico fell in love with flan. Along with the region south of the border, Central and South Americans also adore the taste of this delicious dessert. Mexicans find this dessert appealing since it can appeal to both those that are considered economically rich and poor.

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Flan Made Easy

This recipe is for those that have never attempted to make the delectable treat known as flan. The ingredient list features items that are inexpensive and easy to find. If you are seeking a recipe that is simple and easy, this is the recipe for you.

What You Need:

  • 1 ½ cup sugar
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 13-ounce cans evaporated milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

How To Make It:

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Before beginning, 6 ramekins will be needed to prepare your flan in and a baking dish to place the ramekins in.

In a pan over medium heat, add 1 cup of sugar into the pan once it is warm. While constantly stirring, wait until the sugar turns brown and transforms into caramel. Quickly add 2 to 3 tablespoons of the heated caramel to each ramekin. When adding in the caramel, tilt the ramekin and swirl caramel on the sides. If your caramel begins to harden, reheat and try again.

Blend the eggs with a whisk or mixer. Add in the milk and slowly incorporate ½ cup sugar and then vanilla. Make sure that after each item addition the mixture is blended smooth.

Pour the custard into each caramel lined ramekin. Place all of the ramekins in a ceramic or glass baking dish. Fill the baking dish with 1 to 2 inches of warm water. Bake for 45 minutes in the water filled dish. Stick a knife into a ramekin beside the center mark. If the knife comes out spotless it is ready.

Remove the dish from the oven and allow the custards to cool. Let the ramekins cool in the fridge for 1 hour. After one hour, reverse each ramekin onto your serving plate. The caramel will run over the top of the custard.

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