Flan is a popular dessert in Spain and Latin America, though its preparation varies from country to country.
Mexican flan or Flan Napolitano, is made with cream cheese, giving it a richer consistency than other flans prepared in other countries, like Spanish flan, which is made with only eggs, sugar and whole milk.
It is a sweet, creamy custard dessert smothered in a rich caramel sauce or as it is called in Mexico, crème caramel.
In Mexico, flan is usually made earlier in the day (as flan is cooled before eating) in anticipation for later indulgence.
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Even though considered a dessert, in Mexico anytime is a good time for flan.
Mexican Flan is a dessert made in anticipation of a celebration or special event and is often the springboard for family bonding.
Mexican Flan – Flan Napolitano
1/2 cup sugar
1 – 8 oz. package cream cheese, softened
1 – 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 – 12 oz. can evaporated milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 350 degrees
In a small, heavy saucepan over medium-low heat, add sugar, stirring constantly (can also vigorously move sauce pan back and forth over burner with one hand while stir with the other) until the sugar becomes liquid and golden.
Pour into a 9-inch round metal baking dish, tilting to coat bottom and sides if possible. We found that a metal pan works’s the best for making flan. Also after pour the hot golden liquid sugar into the baking dish, use gloves as you move the dish about coating it, as it will become hot to the touch. Set aside.
In a food processor, or a large boil with a hand beater, beat cream cheese until smooth. Beat in eggs, one at a time, until well incorporated.
Mix in condensed and evaporated milks and vanilla until smooth. Strain egg mixture while pouring into the caramel coated pan.
Place pan into a roasting pan. Carefully fill the roasting pan with hot water to reach halfway up the sides of the metal baking dish.
Bake 50 to 60 minutes, or until flan is just set (does not wobble). place the flan on a wire rack. First loosen the sides with a knife and let cool for 10 to 15 minutes.
Next invert carefully on a rimmed serving platter. Be careful as the liquid caramel will flow out over flan and down the sides. Place platter in the refrigerator and chill 3 hours up to 24 hours.
When chilled, and you are ready for dessert, remove flan from refrigerator, plate and serve.
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