Flan has been around since Roman times (http://flan.holidaycook.com/history.shtml). I've been eating flan since as long as I can remember. Not quite as long as Roman times but a long time none the less.
My memory of flan goes back to my grandmothers house in Colombia when the aroma of cooking and baking was as much a part of my every day as school and play time was.
In my grandmother's house flan was a delicacy and a treat. And my grandmother's flan was always perfect.
Flan is part of almost every South American traditional meal. And there are as many ways of making flan as there are South American and Central American countries. I recently found a recipe for flan at a cooking blog called My Colombian Recipes where directions for a delicious coffee flan can be found.
The coffee flan was incredibly delicious but I opted for the more traditional flan for this blog entry.
After 4 tries at making this flan I discovered the secret to the perfect flan; cooking time. Getting a smooth creamy yet firm texture requires that the custard mixture not be over cooked. I made my first flan cooking to the time mentioned in the recipe of 1 hour. Each consecutive try I reduced the cooking time by 5 minutes until I achieved flan heaven at exactly 50 minutes at 350 degrees. This result, of course, is unique to my oven. Your oven will differ.
You can find the recipe at My Colombian Recipes but to make the traditional flan just eliminate the coffee ingredient OR include the coffee, it's delicious as well.
The first step calls for caramelizing the sugar.
Take the flan out of the super hot water bath very carefully. I use a spatula to lift the ramekins out of the water and on to a kitchen towel. Let them sit out to cool for 30 minutes.
Give this recipe a try. Find it here at My Colombian recipes and leave me a feedback!! Really, leave feedback, I need it.