Cuban Flan

Cuban flan has a firm, silky texture that is more like a cheesecake than a custard. In the summer months, serve with fresh tropical fruits or mixed berries. In the winter, serve flan with sliced bananas sauteed briefly in a little butter, brown sugar, and rum.

INGREDIENTS:
Caramel
1 cup sugar

Filling
4 large eggs
1/2 cup sugar
8 oz. cream cheese, room temperature
1 14 oz. can sweetened condensed milk
1 large can evaporated milk (or 12 oz. heavy cream)
1 tablespoon Mexican vanilla

Garnish
1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted

METHOD:
For caramel:
Place sugar in the bottom of a heavy skillet over medium heat. When sugar starts to melt slightly, begin stirring. Continue stirring until sugar is completely melted and a rich golden brown, about 10 minutes or so. DO NOT BURN! Immediately pour hot syrup into bottom of flan pan or mold of your choice. Tilt the pan carefully to evenly coat the bottom and sides of your flan pan with the caramel. Set aside.

For filling:
Place filling ingredients in food processor and process until mixture is smooth. Strain filling and pour into prepared pan. Bake at 350 degrees in hot water bath for 45-55 minutes.* Cool.

Chill for 24 hours before serving.

To serve, loosen sides of flan with knife. Briefly set bottom of flan pan in hot water for 10 – 15 seconds. Place serving dish on top of pan and quickly invert to turn flan out on plate.

Sprinkle top with toasted almonds.

NOTE:
*If doubling this recipe, add another 15-20 minutes baking time.