Leche Flan dessert is a joy to eat! Crowned with soft caramel on top, it’s just what you need after a hearty meal. A delicious dense and creamy Filipino dessert that everyone will enjoy.
If you’re going to a Filipino get-together, there is a 99% chance that you’ll see leche flan. This oval shaped dessert made of eggs and milk just spells pleasure! Similar to creme caramel, this flan is usually baked or steamed in a llanera (tin mold). Adding Lemon zest and vanilla extract helps elevate the flavor and balance the sweetness. What’s even better is it’s easy to make and can last long if stored properly.
Tips for caramelizing sugar
I have to admit, this was the most challenging part when I first tried making leche flan or crème caramel. One wrong move and you’ll end up with burnt and bitter caramel. So here are some pointers for a perfect golden caramel.
Use low heat when melting the sugar in the tin mold or llanera. Summon all your patience and just let it melt without turning up the heat.
Don’t stir! Eyeball it and let all sugar granules melt then use a tong to hold the mold so you can tilt and spread the caramel at the bottom.
Tilt the llanera forward, back, left and right using tongs to evenly distribute the caramel. You can use tongs to hold the mold to avoid getting burnt.
Let it completely cool down before pouring the custard mixture.
How to make it smooth, creamy, and bubble free!
Don’t over beat the custard mixture to avoid bubbles forming in your leche flan and let it rest for a couple of minutes before steaming.
Use cheese cloth or fine mesh strainer when straining the custard mixture into another bowl and let it sit for a few minutes for the bubbles to burst.
Make sure water is really hot or boiling before steaming then turn down the heat when steaming the flan.
If the middle of the flan is still uncooked after steaming for an hour. Turn off the heat and let the leche flan cook in the steamer for 5 to 10 minutes more.
You can also use the oven to bake your leche flan at 150°C temperature for 1 hour in “bain marie” or water bath method.
Let it chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour to set before serving. You can also make it a day ahead and keep in the fridge overnight.
The secret ingredient is always LOVE
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- 10 egg yolks
- 410 grams or 1 can evaporated milk
- 397 grams or 1 can condense milk
- 5 grams or 1 tsp vanilla sugar or vanilla extract
- 1 tsp lemon rind
For caramel topping
- 6 tbsp granulated sugar (2 tbsp / mold (llanera))
- Place 2 tbsp. of granulated sugar in each llanera or mold. Set the llanera on the stovetop over low heat to dissolve the sugar. Once the sugar completely dissolves, hold the llanera using a tong to tilt and distribute the caramel at the bottom of the mold. Cover with aluminum foil and set aside to let it completely cool down.
- Prepare the steamer. Add water and bring to a boil. While waiting for the water to boil start with the custard mix.
- In a bowl add egg yolks then beat with a wire whisk until all of the yolks are broken then add the condense milk , lemon rind, vanilla sugar and evaporated milk then mix well. Don’t over mix to avoid forming bubbles.
- Using a cheese cloth or fine mesh strainer, strain the custard mixture into another bowl to remove bubbles. Pour the custard mix into llanera with caramel (about 1 3/4 cups) each mixture. Cover with aluminum foil to avoid water dripping from the steam. Let it sit for 5 mins to rest before steaming.
- When water is boiling, turn the heat to low. Arrange your llanera or molds in the steamer and steam for 1 hour or when inserted tooth pick comes out clean.
- If the middle of the flan is still uncooked turn off the heat and let the leche flan cook in the steamer for 5 to 10 minutes more. Removed the llanera from steamer and let it cool complete and refrigerate for best result. Bon appetit!