This is a wonderful dessert after a rich or highly spiced meal, and it also makes
a delightful snack. Creme Caramel is an old French specialty which they taught to
the Mexicans during the time they ruled Mexico. The Mexicans have re-named it Flan,
and have made it even better. Now it can be found all over Mexico, from the finest
restaurant to the small street vendor, and is enjoyed by all. This version is nicely
sweet, light as a maidens breath, and perfectly textured.
4 3/4 cups milk
1 1/3 cups half-and-half
4 cups granulated sugar, divided
Zest of one lemon
Good grating of nutmeg
1/4 cup water
12 egg yolks
8 whole eggs
Bring milk, half-and-half, 2 cups sugar, lemon zest and nutmeg gently to a boil,
stirring often. Cool milk mixture.
While milk mixture is cooling, prepare the Caramel. In a heavy pan, bring to
a boil the remaining 2 cups sugar and water.
Stir until sugar is melted. Boil over high heat without stirring until sugar
caramelizes to a light golden brown. Watch it carefully, it can go past the light
brown stage quickly and burn.
Pour into twelve custard cups and swirl carefully
to coat bottom evenly about 1/8 inch thick. Be careful as this stuff really burns
if you get it on you.
While the caramel cools, beat well together the egg yolks and whole eggs.
When milk mixture has cooled to lukewarm, beat the eggs gently in, then strain.
Pour into the prepared custard cups.
Dust with a delicate touch of cinnamon and/or nutmeg.
Stand cups in baking pan and carefully fill pan with enough hot water to
come about half way up sides of cups.
Bake at 300 degrees F about one hour or until
knife or bamboo skewer inserted in center of cup comes out clean.
To serve, run knife carefully around inside of each cup. Turn out gently onto
Garnish with a bit of mint and a dollop of whipped cream.
Posted by CookinMom at Recipe Goldmine April 27, 2001.