Saturday, July 14, 2012

Creamy Brazilian-Style Flan (Pudim de Leite Condensado)

My parents and I recently had dinner at a Cuban restaurant near our house. The food was great, but the dessert was what stuck in our minds. We ordered the Cuban-style flan, and it was the creamiest flan we had ever tasted. It was almost like eating a thick pastry cream, only so much better. After the first bite, my mom and I knew we had to recreate it.
We asked the waitress what was in it, and she mentioned evaporated milk. The flan was very much like the custard we eat all the time in Brazil, but creamier, so we decided to use a traditional Brazilian recipe but swap in evaporated milk for regular. Although it is not traditional, we also added in a little bit of vanilla, which you can't make out distinctly but adds to the overall flavor.
It ended up working out so well. The flan was delicious, very much like the one we had at the restaurant. It combined the creaminess of the Cuban flan with the burnt-sugar taste and slightly spongy texture of the Brazilian, and was just what we had hoped for.
We cooked ours in a special Brazilian flan pan, which is a flan mold over a saucepan of the same size, which has simmering water in it. The instructions I have included are for baking it, but if you have a pan that fits over one of your saucepans and has a lid, by all means, do use it.
Enjoy! <3
Creamy Brazilian-Style Flan (Pudim de Leite Condensado)

6 tablespoons granulated sugar
6 tablespoons water
2 14-oz cans sweetened condensed milk
2 14-oz cans evaporated milk
6 eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 F.
In a very clean standard tube/bundt cake pan (one without a design or pattern), mix together the water and granulated sugar. Place the pan over a direct flame and stir the mixture until it darkens into a honey-colored caramel. Remove from heat and tilt the pan so that the caramel covers the sides as well as the bottom of the pan.
In a blender or food processor, combine the sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, eggs, and vanilla. Blend only until no streaks remain.
Pour the mixture into the caramel-lined tube pan. Place the tube pan into roasting pan with a dishcloth in the bottom (to prevent the pans from rattling against each other in the oven). Place the two pans into the oven and pour in about two inches of warm water.
Bake for about 40 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the custard comes out with only a few streaks and it still jiggles slightly when moved. Refrigerate for at least two hours before unmolding onto a plate. Refrigerate until serving.

No comments: