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Creamy Caramel Flan

Reviewed: Aug. 3, 2010
Cream cheese-based flans are typically less popular in Latin countries, but I believe if enough people foisted this recipe on friends and family all over the world, we would never hear of the regular run-of-the-mill flan ever again. You can't do better than this recipe, but if you wanted an even creamier consistency, use 5 jumbo-sized eggs (this recipe doesn't include the recommended size of the egg), removing the egg white from one (if not two) of the eggs. When cooking the sugar, remember that it will continue to cook for a while after you've taken the saucepan off the flame. If you're worried about the sugar burning, take it off the flame when there's still a few clumps of sugar waiting to dissolve. To those perplexed by the amount of sugar that remains stuck to the pan when turning over the flan...don't be afraid to experiment: Chip away at the sugar and dump it into a bowl and crush the sugar into bits, after which you can sprinkle it atop the flan. (Or place the sugar, in shards, around the flan; people, trust me, will love munching on it.) Also, I find that using a disposable aluminum pan produces significantly tastier results. That said, aluminum pans are rare in 10-inch sizes, so what I do is make two little flans (with the excess batter) in two small creme brulee dishes, letting them cook next to the bigger flan in the water bath.
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