Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Spanish Flan

Spanish Flan....oh so good!
A few weeks ago, while all the participants of FFWD were making their Creme Brulees, I was unable to participate. Not because I don't love Creme Brulee but, because I was hosting a big New Years Day party.  One of our traditional desserts is a very large Spanish Flan. This recipe comes from my cousin Mary. It was her contribution to our New Years day open house for years. She gave me her recipe years ago and I've made it quite often to rave reviews. I decided to make it for our dessert table this year, since my cousin wouldn't be here, and neither would her Flan.
Flan, like Creme Brulee is a type of custard. The history of custard is quite long, going back to  ancient Roman times when they first domesticated chickens. This gave them eggs and led these ancient Roman cooks to develop custard type dishes. Once they realized the binding power of eggs, they became experts at creating many kinds of egg based dishes. They developed savory dishes made with cheese and meat; the precursor to the quiche. Additionally, they also put together sweet flavored dishes made with honey, nuts and cinnamon. Custard? Food historians generally agree that the custard we enjoy today dates back to the Middle ages. Flan is probably the most famous and widely adapted custard dessert in the world.
Since I was a small child I have had a deep fondness for custard. Any form...savory or sweet...pudding, pie, quiche, creme brulee, flan. I love them all! This recipe makes a very large flan so it's great for a party. It can also be halved.

Sugar in the bottom of pan
Shake pan over heat until it melts
Place mold in larger pan of water then into the oven

Let cool, then refrigerate

Unmold the flan onto a platter


So wonderfully delicious!


2 cans sweetened condensed milk (14 oz.)
2 cans evaporated milk (13 oz.)
1 8oz. cream cheese (softened)
12 eggs
2 cans water ( 28 oz.)
1 teaspoon vanilla
¼ teaspoon salt
6 Tablespoons sugar


1. Put the cans of condensed milk and evaporated milk in a mixer bowl along with the cream cheese.
    Mix until smooth.
2. Beat the 12 eggs in a separate bowl; then add to bowl of milk and cream cheese along with the rest of               the ingredients (except sugar). 
3. Sprinkle sugar in 2 mold pans (5 cups) or 1-10 inch round pan (my pan is 10 x 3 not a springform); Place pan over medium heat, using oven mitts, to caramelize sugar by shaking pan occasionally until sugar melts and turns a light golden brown. Don't worry about the hard sugar...it's ok!!
4. After the sugar melts spread it out in the mold pan. (bottom and sides)
5. Then pour the mixture into the pan with sugar.
6. Put mold pan into a larger pan and pour some water into the larger pan to come up one inch on flan mold.
7. Then put the pan in the oven for 1 hour at 350〫 It's done when a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
8. Cool at room temperature. Then refrigerate overnight. When ready to serve...unmold onto plate. You may need to put the mold pan in hot water for a few seconds.
This recipe halves nicely.


  1. Positively stunning, Kathy! You did your cousin proud!

  2. I could eat the entire flan by myself! Is that bad?

  3. I agree your flan is perfect! It looks amazingly good in your photos, I'm so happy you are sharing the recipe with us;-)

  4. Looks inviting. I have never made a flan

  5. This looks really yummy, we usually made this flan during festival and we call it leche flan(caramel custard), we don't usually made flan with cream cheese but why not try...thanks for this recipe

  6. That is one LARGE flan! My recipe is usually half that (but still with a whole cream cheese bar) and I take everything for a whirl in the blender. It's also popular without the cheese or with a can of cream of coconut stirred in. It's wonderful, Kathy!

  7. Oh, I love flan...and yours is so beautiful. Now, that would be next New Year's at your house for flan, right? I am putting it on my calendar! ;-)

  8. That looks delicious! I've never actually made a flan before but I guess it can't be any harder than making creme brulee. And your big one looks like a great way to serve a crowd.

  9. What is it about creme brulee and flans that so welcome? I am saving this - I love the idea of a giant dessert for family gatherings and I love this!

  10. Very nice done and look absolutely delicious! This will definitely wow your guests.

  11. Your flan looks gorgeous, Kathy. My sister-in-law makes flan every year for Christmas, but she makes it in a large, but shallow baking dish so the slices are not that thick. I love the way yours looks made in the spring form pan.

    1. Elaine, I use a 10x3 inch round cake pan not a spring form. I found the pan on line years ago at a baking supply site. The flan is very watery when you pour it in...I don't think a spring form would work.

  12. Wow, Kathy-this is one huge flan! Cream cheese addition is unusual...never heard it made this way, but since I'm such a flan lover and like to make it differently, as I did previously, I would for sure try your recipe out. So creamy droolworthy delcious!
    Sorry for not commenting sooner, I still have the "health issues" with my kitty, Prince. Now he decided that he wants to eat at 3:00am. Would not stop meowing until I got up to open a can of soft food for him, and ate the entire thing. By the time I got back to sleep; he woke me up at his usual 7:00am feeding! I've been losing a lot of sleep this week...but the main thing is, he is fighting to stay, and not ready to be put down. No wonder, cats have nine lives!!!

  13. BEAUTIFUL flan!! It's a popular dessert here in AZ, but I've never actually tried making it myself. Great work!