Friday, August 4, 2006

lola's leche flan

Friday, August 4, 2006
I don't remember my grandma cooking leche flan, all I've remembered from her being in the kitchen is either cooking up a batch of potatoes (which she obtained by sacks!!!). It cost around 20 pesos per sack before. From salad to mashed to fried to whateever concoction, you name it, we lived on potatoes for a whole summer and still a lot to give away. Going back to leche flan, those who still can remember was that my lola would make leche flan back then for a living. So, being in a period of reminiscing, I looked up tons and tons of recipes of leche flan, read and asked for tips about making leche flan.
A good leche flan for me would be smooth, not too sweet, with a tinge of lemony flavor, not eggy, not bubbly, not too much caramel. I've liked the caramel running down the sides not the ones concentrated on the top, not too sweet to cover the lemony-vanilla flavor of the flan. I tried to skip the caramel, but then decided to experiment on it. So I came up with this recipe. not too sweet yet sinful to taste.
1 cup of muscovado sugar
12 large egg yolks
3 large eggs
1 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp of lemon flavoring (I didn't have lemon zest then)
2 tsp of vanilla flavoring
3 cups of fresh milk
I started to caramelize the muscovado sugar in medium heat, but then my dilemma was when it would caramelize, and since I was a beginner and didn't wan't to have a bitter caramel, decided to add water bit by bit until I attained the consistency I wanted. Quickly poured the caramel to the pans (I used the traditional oval flan pans) covered the bottom and sides and placed the pans into the refrigerator to cool.
Next the flan, I gently mixed, take note GENTLY, the remaining ingredients together. I didn't beat the eggs, which others would do initially. I just used a large spoon and mixed and mixed and mixed and mixed until the milk coulldn't be singled out and the sugar was dissolved. At this point, there was still discernible egg whites in the mixture. So strain I did do remove the solids and some of the egg whites. Pour the mixture in the caramelized flans
As far as I've read you can make the leche flan by baking or steaming. So since a day before I was making this I made a terrible disaster in the oven, steam it was. I proceeded to cover the pans with aluminum foil to avoid from water dripping into my experiment. Steamed for 25 or so minutes. I didn't know if it was ignorance or not but I used as toothpick to check, and it came out clean. Careful not to overcook the flan, I immediately took the flans out of the heat.
The verdict? The one's my aunt took didn't last for the day and at home, even my egg-avoiding grandma decided to end her vigil.

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