23 Jan2009

Leche Flan, Round II

by Marketman

flan85

Cut a slice and it should look like the edge of an infinity swimming pool, caramel sliding over the edge providing a sheen of bitter sweetness that puts your tastebuds on serious alert. A leche flan has to look good and taste brilliant. Of course, taste is something that differs from one diner to another. But here are the results of the first few leche flans I made, see Round I, here, for background information. I used two different recipes, one from a recently published book that has the condensed milk version, and one that relies on fresh full cream milk and heavy cream. The former used whole eggs as specified in the original recipe, and the latter only uses egg yolks. I realize there are now two differences, the canned milk and the egg whites, an issue I can test further in future iterations if necessary…

flan8

First up, an overview. The two leche flans that were steamed (and likely overcooked/singed) are at the top of this photo above. The northwest corner is the milk/cream version and northeast corner has the condensed milk/evaporated version. They were cooked in the same steamer at the same time. The two leche flans at the bottom of the same photo are the bain marie in an oven at 310F version. The southwest corner has the milk/cream version and the southeast corner has the condensed milk/evaporated milk version.

flan81

I definitely screwed up the steaming process. It was the first time I have steamed leche flans. But I screwed it up for BOTH versions. So it’s still fair to compare the “oversteamed” examples. In the photo above, you see the condensed milk/evaporated milk version that was steamed. The first obvious feature is that the caramel has burned, was practically black in some places. It seems the added sugars from the canned milks may have combined with the natural caramel and with the extra hot steaming action, went further to burn. It wasn’t inedible, it was nice and bittersweet, but looked horrible. The flan itself was best described as rubbery as opposed to being dense. And again, this could be due to overcooking it, but the cream version was not rubbery at all. There were quite a few bubbles in the flan, probably a result of the excessively high heat. Personally, blindfolded, I could tell this version was not made with fresh milk or cream. It was my personal least favorite of the four flans. And I’m not sure how the eggwhites figure in the equation, but I am leaning towards banishing eggwhites from future experiments as I can’t see what their purpose is other than economy. It couldn’t be flavor. And as for lightness, wouldn’t they encourage bubbling?

It was by no means scientific, but we had 9 tasters in our household yesterday, including our part-time gardener and other folks who came through, and they all tasted all four versions blind, or without knowledge of the version they were tasting and the comments were very interesting. This version above garnered 1 vote as the taster’s “favorite.” They liked it bitter, they preferred a harder, stick-to-the-ribs quality that approximated what they had at home. However, it was the last version to be fully consumed out of the four plates set out. Oh and since this was the version in the cookbook and it had to details about steaming, this could very well be your final result if you used that recipe. Best practice? Hmmm…. :(

flan82

This photo above is the milk/cream version in the same steamer. Note how the edges are singed and overcooked, but the caramel did not burn and remains a nice golden color. The flan itself was creamy, and soft and not rubbery at all. There were a few bubbles in the flan, but nowhere near as the previous flan. Also, it is interesting to note that this flan was at least 5-7 millimeters thinner and should therefore have cooked faster and burned more. But instead, the canned version was worse for wear in this steamed battle. This version was the second plate to be polished off and finished, though no one pointed to it as a favorite. Many said this was their second favorite.

flan83

The third flan, above, is the condensed and evaporated milk and whole egg version, but baked in a bain marie in a 310F oven. It had an uneven surface, was still best described as slightly rubbery, though less rubbery than the steamed version, and it had a few bubbles in the flan. It had a density to it and that more orangey color reminiscent of market or carinderia flans. Oddly the lady that picked #1 above chose that one over this slightly more refined (in my opinion) version of the same recipe. Nobody this as their favorite and it was the third one to be fully consumed.

flan84

This fourth flan was made with milk/cream and baked in a bain marie at 310F. It was delicious. Creamy, silky and smooth, it felt brilliant on the tongue and slid down nice and easy. It wasn’t rubbery at all, and even without flavorings, was in my opinion, by far superior to the others. It even looked better for some reason. There were no bubbles in the flan at all. Blindfolded, I could have told you this was the flan I was used to making, so I am a biased observer. What was really interesting to watch were the other tasters, who while they were happy with the canned version, had these looks of amused revelation when they tried the fresh milk/cream version. This flan disappeared in a flash, 3x faster than any other. It was then followed by the other cream/milk version, then the two condensed milk versions. Now again, I am cautious with my cockeyed experimental results. But I do think that folks need to leave their personal favorites and biases aside and sit down and taste a brilliant condensed milk flan versus a brilliant fresh/milk flan before they decide on their favorite.

flan86

The final vote for this round of the “battle”? 8 votes for the milk/cream baked in the oven, 1 vote for the condensed milk with whole eggs in a steamer. And please don’t assume this is a socioeconomic choice, as roughly 50% of the “voters” had never tried a fresh milk/cream leche flan before. If you are hungry now and craving leche flan, just remember the tips from the previous post and all the readers with respect to steaming. But I do recommend you try baking in a bain marie at 310F if you have an oven… Enjoy!

 

COMMENTS:

  1. jun says:

    looks like must try the fresh milk / cream version. Im off for a week this will be one of my things to do during Chinese new year holiday here.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 8:08 am

     
  2. bluegirl says:

    Can’t wait for round 3!

    Jan 23, 2009 | 8:13 am

     
  3. jun says:

    hi MM, the hard flan you may want to try to fry it then sprinkle it with sugar and cinnamon. its called leche frita. I haven’t tried but the review was very good. also I saw one recipe that says soak one or two green fig leaves in the milk overnight to elevate the flan to a new level.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 8:13 am

     
  4. Marketman says:

    jun, FRIED LECHE FLAN? OMG, that sounds too good to resist trying… talk about fat overload! Unfortunately, there are no fresh fig leaves in Manila… I wonder if it is for flavor or a chemical reaction with the milk…

    Jan 23, 2009 | 8:18 am

     
  5. Maria Clara says:

    I concur with the verdict of your tasters! Fresh milk/cream and eggyolks combined together is heaven and the big winner. If you still have the whole eggs and canned milk in your life support please do me a big favor and do an assisted suicide and pull their plug! Kill them permanently just a thought only! Going back to this fresh milk and eggyolks combo – the yemas that I know of were made of fresh carabao milk, eggyolks, sugar and butter. No condensed milk involved in my grandma’s yemas. The duck eggyolks are used for color if you use them and if 100% duck eggyolks commissioned in your leche flan will yield an eggy taste. Native chicken layers or organic egg has a lot of orangee yellowish color now. There are three sahogs that I like in my halo halo leche flan, macapuno and sweetened saba banan!

    Jan 23, 2009 | 8:23 am

     
  6. millet says:

    MM, the eggwhites account for the bubbles. my mom-in-law made hundreds of leche flans to give away each Christmas. aside from using only eggyolks, she would only stir the mixture enough to break up the yolks and blend the ingredients. after pouring the mixture in the llaneras, she would let them rest for about 30 minutes before putting them in the oven. this, she said, were the secrets to her very smooth, very rich leche flan.

    p.s. she used evaporated milk but not condensed milk.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 8:39 am

     
  7. AleXena says:

    Happy Happy Happy!!! I’m so giddy looking at the pictures coz leche flan and ube jalaya tops my list of all time favorite dessert!!!!!=)

    Now for a self-confessed “de lata” worshiper when it comes to leche flans, the fresh milk and cream, oven-cooked will be gone in a flash if I get a hold on it! Not only does it look pretty, I bet it taste so good. Sad that the steamer ones didn’t hold well, since I am looking forward to it because we don’t have an oven at home. Maybe another try perhaps?=)

    I will try making one out of fresh carabao’s milk if I get to find one and cook it the way my relatives taught me using the steamer. But at any rate can you suggest any other brand of cream or milk we can use? I am only acquainted with the all-purpose creams available in the market, can I use that?=P

    This is in time for my Dad’s bday lunch this sunday!=)

    Jan 23, 2009 | 8:39 am

     
  8. ragamuffin girl says:

    I’m not big on leche flan but I must admit your experiments are very interesting and I would volunteer to be one of the blind tasters anytime!

    Jan 23, 2009 | 8:41 am

     
  9. zena says:

    I’ll eat them all! The milk/cream in the oven does look the most tempting. And yes, the fried leche flan has also been referred to as fried custard. It was chilled, sliced and dredged in flour/starch. Can’t remember if it had eggs and bread crumbs afterward but certainly the flour then fried in oil. Doesn’t have to be deep-fried since you can turn the food anyway. My next questions is this, MM. What did you do with the whites? Did you freeze them? I would make a nice and light chocolate mousse. =)

    Jan 23, 2009 | 8:47 am

     
  10. boljo-anon says:

    I have been taught that including eggwhites in a leche flan is a major blunder.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 8:54 am

     
  11. maria says:

    love looking at the 4th flan. i definitely want to try this.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 9:17 am

     
  12. chinky says:

    My mouth is watering!

    Jan 23, 2009 | 9:19 am

     
  13. Christina Foss says:

    MM, I wouldn’t reject egg whites out of hand- I use a combination of 6 eggs and 2 yolks well blended, adding sugar gradually until the mixture is fairly thick and pale coloured. After pouring the mixture into the caramelised pans I let it sit for awhile to let the bubbles disappear, then I steam them in a bain marie at 350F. The result is wonderfully smooth and rich without being cloying.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 9:50 am

     
  14. betty q. says:

    If your testers are still up to it and not sawa yet ….here is my version MM…

    for 1 llanera:

    1 cup cream
    1 cup fresh milk
    2 eggs
    3 yolks
    a little less than 4 tbsp. sugar
    pinch of salt
    1 tsp. vanill

    If no cream, all milk will do ! less calories! I use cream and milk in the restaurant kasi the customers prefer creamy taste. Oh, try it with orange zest steeped in the milk and then strained before adding to the eggs, also just a touch of Grand Marnier.

    But if you have those sake cups…though it is tedious to make esp. the unmoulding, nice dessert for buffet….unmould on those tiny chinese plates…

    One time, I made a trio of creme caramel in sake cups…plain, chocolate, and mocha flavoured…and served it on those white irregular shaped plates, garnished with berries and lengua de gatos. You have got to try that, MM!

    Jan 23, 2009 | 10:30 am

     
  15. Queen B says:

    The fourth leche flan really looks nice and with your results on the taste I will try to make one this weekend. I will be making it in ramekins though since I don’t have llanera and will be cooking it in baine marie.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 10:32 am

     
  16. Beth says:

    Hi MM. Just wondering, did you bake these flans the same length of time?

    Jan 23, 2009 | 10:50 am

     
  17. Marketman says:

    Beth, yes, pretty much the same length of time, even though the milk/cream ones were thinner…. I was watching the” jiggle-ness” of the flans and pulled them out at the same time.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 11:01 am

     
  18. Kai says:

    I was taught that overbeating the custard will result in those bubbles. We’ve been making leche flans with condensed and evaporated milk (Alaska or Carnation, but Alaska tastes better) ever since I can remember, and we got smooth, silky ones, steamed. Better for the heart, too.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 11:13 am

     
  19. Beth says:

    Hmm … maybe you should steam/bake them individually. Since their compositions are different, perhaps their individual ideal cooking times and temperatures are different.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 11:19 am

     
  20. Marketman says:

    Beth, perhpas, but the measure of doneness is the jiggly-ness of the flan, so when they seemed about right, they were pulled out. For the steamed version, I definitely have to try this again, as I definitely had the heat too high. But that wouldn’t explain why one turned out miserable and the other one, still edible. You’d have to look to the ingredients, not the method.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 11:34 am

     
  21. sonny sj says:

    MM,

    At our household I am usually in-charge of cooking leche flan, yun nga lang it’s always the condensed milk version, cooked by steaming. Anyway, here are things I have learned along the way which could be helpful even when cooking the fresh milk version.

    1. as many have pointed out, the key is to rest the custard before steaming. personally, I would rest it for at least two hours. the waiting time can be used to prepare the caramel for the llaneras.
    2. when steaming the custard, the water should barely be boiling. a rolling boil will make the custard boil as well resulting in a bubbly flan.
    3. the custard cooks faster if the llaneras are not covered with foil when steamed. don’t worry about steam condensate dripping on to the flan. the cover of most steamers slopes to the side so the condensate will actual drip along the side of the steamer and not on the flan.
    4. my usual steaming time is 20 mins maximum.
    5. never ever open the steamer half way through the cooking time. this will bring down the temperature and it would take you a lot, lot longer to cook the leche flan.
    6. the best condensed milk to use is the Milkmaid brand.
    7. last, but i guess the best of all, in the good old days when cooking is done mostly on kalan de kahoy, the women in our province place the cooked leche flans over embers from the kalan para “mag-tutong” yun caramel. When the flan is inverted into the serving plate, the flan would have a wonderful candy-like, almost burnt crust similar to that of crème brulee.

    I’ve always thought na mas masarap kung fresh milk/gatas na kalabaw ang gagamitin. I have to try this version soon.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 11:52 am

     
  22. sonny sj says:

    PS. admittedly, i have not tried pointer no. 7 kasi we have already stopped using the kalan de kahoy when i started cooking leche flan on my own.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 11:57 am

     
  23. Maria Clara says:

    In years before La Germania stove with oven was introduced, my hometown boys and girls cooked their leche flan in this fashion. Llanera are still the same as in those days. I believe up to this time most of these people still implement this cooking method. They use a flat cookware called tatso which was usually made out of cooper and has handles on both sides. With the surplus scrap metal coming from Clark and Subic they turn them into tatso which are made out of aluminum and much cost less than their cooper counterparts. They arrange the llanera and prop them with pieces of small wood, rice husk or something else to make the llanera even and avoid lopsided leche flan. Then they pour water and let the water boil then they tame down the fire until it is simmering water. After 30 minutes in simmering water they cover the top with a sheetmetal large enough to cover the entire cooking surface. And put an amber on this sheetmetal. So it is like the top of the bibingkahang so it has apoy sa taas at apoy sa ibaba. They continuously add water so cooking vessel will not dry out. When they are done they look like the ones baked in the oven bain marie fashion. I am really impressed with our innovative approach and ingenuity.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 12:00 pm

     
  24. Tricia says:

    I agree with the Milkmaid. It’s the only condensed milk I use. Mas mahal nga lang ng konti.

    I tried fresh carabao’s milk with condensed milk before. It did not turn out as creamy.

    My sister’s version is egg yolks, milkmaid & vanilla only. Pamatay!

    Jan 23, 2009 | 12:01 pm

     
  25. Beth says:

    MM, I would have to disagree a bit. The method, as much as the ingredients count. If you’re comparing apples to oranges in terms of ingredients, then the methods must also be apples and oranges. You can’t use the same method (which includes temperature, length of cooking and cooling time, etc) for two things that have different ingredients or compositions. One does not react the same way as the other, therefore the optimal cooking method is different for each one. Even the jiggle may be different. The jiggle of one which indicates doneness or the right moment to take it out may not be the same for the other. Bottomline is that each one may have a different optimal cooking method which brings out the best in that recipe. Once that is done, then a true comparison can be made.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 12:22 pm

     
  26. Marketman says:

    Beth, I agree that the method counts. But in this case the method used, steaming, was the same for both versions – condensed vs. fresh cream. So it becomes a question of how long to steam it, and the best way I can gauge that is how the flan looks and feels. It may definitely turn out that the flan with condensed milk takes shorter to cook, but one will still have to adjust for jiggle. As I stated earlier, the milk version was thinner physically, and I thought would take a shorter amount of time, but it didn’t. Also, if the actual recipe is to go by, the suggested cooking time was 1 hour steaming for the condensed milk version, instead of the half hour that I used, but then I used a smaller llanera and obviously, the heat was too high. Not to worry, I haven’t given up on the condensed milk version, will try it with different brands and with a slower steam. But so far, I am comfortable with and like the results of the baked bain marie method which seems to be less cumbersome, takes the guess work out of the equation, but assumes you have an oven…

    Jan 23, 2009 | 12:50 pm

     
  27. isagarch says:

    On that last picture, I noticed the reflection of the trees in the background – and having just watched CSI, I can just imagine hunky Nick Stokes getting the sunrise/sunset schedule, checking the angle of the sun at the time the photo and determining the comparative size of the trees in the leche flan reflection and be able to determine where MM’s house is so he can participate in the Flan off!

    Jan 23, 2009 | 1:24 pm

     
  28. Gina says:

    Are you by any chance using a new camera? That first photo is a winner: the vivid caramel color and silky smoothness jump off the page. And that infinity pool imagery in the first sentence is brilliant.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 2:46 pm

     
  29. Katrina says:

    My family is quite picky with leche flan, because years ago, we thought that the best version was the one we had at home. We had a succession of cooks who learned the recipe, but after some time, the last cook was gone and the recipe was lost. From the looks alone of the fourth leche flan, I can tell that that would be the best, and the closest to the one I grew up with. However, I’m quite sure our cooks never used fresh milk, much less cream. I can’t recall if they used a combination of evap & condensed or only evap, but it was definitely full cream, not filled milk. And I’m sorry to be makulit about this, MM, but I really think the difference in texture is due less to the milk, than to not using (or hardly using) egg whites. Our recipe used a dozen eggs, of which, at most, only one was whole.

    Hmm…it makes me wonder, though, if our leche flan would’ve been improved (or not) with the use of fresh milk/cream.

    And as for that cookbook recipe — I shudder at the thought of a leche flan newbie attempting to make it, and thereafter judging the dessert unfairly! :-(

    Jan 23, 2009 | 2:51 pm

     
  30. Katrina says:

    Oh, and I forgot to say: I agree with Gina, that infinity pool line is wonderful!

    Jan 23, 2009 | 2:54 pm

     
  31. Marketman says:

    Katrina, if you used a dozen eggs, and one was whole, that’s really like useing 12 egg yolks, a fabulously rich leche flan, no matter what… :)

    Jan 23, 2009 | 3:06 pm

     
  32. Danny says:

    MM,
    I agree with Katrina in her observations, that you can get comparable results using canned milk. The key factors are mainly:
    a) the higher proportion of yolks vs. whole eggs (max. 15-20%)
    b) higher proportion of condensed milk vs evaporated milk, and
    c) using a steamer (we have one similar to yours)will not yield comparable results vis-a-vis a bain-marie. Reason being that it is difficult to control the boil (ideally you would want it below boiling point) and the condensation on the cover of the steamer which makes its way into the flan. The end result in using the steamer is a less silky texture as you have seen in your experiments.

    Regards

    Jan 23, 2009 | 3:13 pm

     
  33. fried-neurons says:

    I’m not sure what ingredients she used, but when I was a boy we used to buy our leche flans from this lady who was a friend of a member of our staff. She definitely did not have an oven at home, so I assume she steamed hers. Her flan was very consistent… never any bubbles, always creamy smooth, always delicious. Hmmm… maybe I should attempt to contact her and try to get her recipe.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 3:59 pm

     
  34. Lee says:

    jun.. pigs we have, figs we have not.

    Before you plan to make the perfect flan
    Read the posts of the Marketman
    and browse the comments of his clan
    Ask the question of which milk to bother?
    Open a can or squeeze straight from the udder?

    Jan 23, 2009 | 4:00 pm

     
  35. Jun says:

    hehehe Lee, you can also soak the pig into the milk overnight then roast it ala Marketman. You might be able to get the level 10 of lechon. Anyway I wish I can squeeze it directly from the cow unfortunately there is no cow here…but there is still hope since the grocer has fresh milk and cream. I won’t do the can milk this time since we always have that kind of flan. Let me see if my wife will distinguish the difference.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 5:17 pm

     
  36. marissewalangkaparis says:

    Mmmmm…exciting experiment!! My flans last night tasted good but the texture wasn’t.Bubbles…but will try again like you MM. It’s about time I perfect my leche flan (like my ma-in-law) Am grateful for all the inputs. I think I overcooked. I will also let it sit for sometime before steaming. Might try the oven too…Hahaha..this is definitely fun. Just to find younger people to eat. Cholesterol!!!!
    Lee…you’re funny…

    Jan 23, 2009 | 6:48 pm

     
  37. tin cc-ong says:

    Hi, MM!

    I actually got curious and decided to look online for a Flan recipe that didn’t use canned milk — (most do)

    I found an interesting alternative and I wonder how it would turn out:

    Someone on allrecipes.com actually substituted Vanilla Bean Ice Cream for the milk in the flan.

    (I’ve seen ice cream mixed with gelatin to make Mango Pudding and it turned out really nicely.)

    Jan 23, 2009 | 7:30 pm

     
  38. danney says:

    Hello to All,

    Can anyone tell me if cheese and ham are still edible though with a bit of mold? My mother in law have some leftover queso de bola and serrano ham from last Christmas and New Year.

    If so, how do we get rid of the mold? If not, should I just tell her to throw them away?

    Jan 23, 2009 | 10:04 pm

     
  39. danney says:

    Oopps I’m sorry I only have one mother in law. She will kill me. “I mean “My mother in law has some leftover queso de bola and jamon serrano.

    Jan 23, 2009 | 10:06 pm

     
  40. Angela says:

    That picture of the fourth leche flan is calling my name! It’s 6:43 am here and I am craving leche flan :)

    My family also used a dozen eggs (only one whole), condensed milk (no evap. milk), a can full of water (using the condensed milk can as measure), cooked in bain marie at 350 degrees. It was smooth, silky, and dense with no bubbles.

    My mom said that my Lola (a full-blooded Bulakena) made leche flan using carabao milk and she recalls that it was VERY good. She can’t seem to remember how it was cooked. . .

    Danney: My husband suffered food poisoning from eating bad ham (a co-worker had shared one of his sandwiches). He was sick for 2 days and couldn’t keep anything down. So, just to be cautious I would suggest throwing it out.

    Time check: 6:56 am. I’m off to make leche flan :)

    Jan 23, 2009 | 10:57 pm

     
  41. zarina says:

    still confused but I will try my best to make this over the weekend. your website is one of my favorite site to check on while I’m at work. Thanks again =) happy chinese new year to everyone. kyong hee hwat chai =P

    Jan 23, 2009 | 11:05 pm

     
  42. DhayL says:

    just by looking at the photos, it is obvious that the milk/cream combination looks more enticing and mouth-watering, and your tasters just proved that!

    Jan 23, 2009 | 11:41 pm

     
  43. sister says:

    Danney, THROW OUT the ham and the cheese with mold. Just removing the mold is inadequate as it could have tendrils invisible to the naked eye. Mold on a country ham is scrubbed off and then the ham is cooked for four hours. Certain molds introduced into cheese making are highly restricted. You don’t know what kind of mold is on that leftover cheese or ham. You are talking about food that is already cooked but contaminated thereafter. Throw IT out or risk food poisoning.

    Jan 24, 2009 | 12:26 am

     
  44. DhayL says:

    MM, one problem i always encounter when pouring in the mixture into the molds, is that the caramel rises up to the top, sort of gets mixed in with the flan mixture. I guess I have to let it stand for a bit to hardened. So my stupid question is how long should I let it stand for? :)

    Jan 24, 2009 | 12:52 am

     
  45. betty q. says:

    tin cc-ong: Yes, I have done mango pudding using Vanilla ice cream when I am too lazy to go out and buy cream or half and half! But you have to remember that ice cream has EMULSIFIERS added to it esp. the commercial ones unless you make it yourself. if you want to try mango pudding like the ones they serve in high end Chinese restaurants. I can give you a recipe (what I make that is a killer!) It is Chinese New Year just around the corner, and I know I have to make LOTS AGAIN!!!! Anyway, going back to subbing ice cream for the milk…just use maybe Haagen Daz if yoou really have to sub!

    Dhay, it is not a stupid question! You will hear a cracking sound when the caramel is getting hard…sometimes you do, sometimes yoou don’t esp. when you start pouring the custard. I think it is safe to assume that a good half hour will be enough to let it set as hard as possible much quicker if the weather there is cold like it is here! I would once in a while check it by TILTING it …if it stays put, then it is getting set! OR use a barbecue stick…if it doesn’t poke through the caramel, then it IS SET!

    Jan 24, 2009 | 1:47 am

     
  46. sister says:

    Danney, Didn’t see the hamon serrano designation until now. If you truly have one it is uncooked, like prosciutto, so I don’t know about the mold on that one. When in doubt, throw it out, is my motto.

    Jan 24, 2009 | 2:22 am

     
  47. quiapo says:

    Betty Q – I would appreciate your Mango Pudding recipe – my wife orders it at the end of yum cha, and it would be nice if I can make it at home.

    Jan 24, 2009 | 3:24 am

     
  48. raissa says:

    our family recipe for leche plan for as long as i know has used canned milk and egg yolks with a few egg whites. And we have used steaming. The best leche flan to me is its texture and consistency. It must have this “melt-in-your-mouth” goodness. No use for teeth sort of thing. How my lola makes it is steaming it over very low heat, making sure that it doesnt boil. My cousins and I are sort of “leche flan” snobs and by looking at it alone we can tell if its worth trying or not. Our family uses dayap instead of vanilla. But one of these days I might ask my uncle to try the milk/cream. version

    Jan 24, 2009 | 3:35 am

     
  49. Marketman says:

    raissa, I love fland flavored with dayap, I have one in the archives, I think. DhayL, I like my caramel quite dark, so it seems to set in seconds and I wait only 1-2 minutes at most before pouring the milk/egg mixture. If the mixture has been resting in the fridge, the caramel almost always cracks when the milk hits the caramel. Perhaps one reason is that the caramel is too pale and hasn’t hit the temperature where it would turn to hard candy yet? Danney, I would throw it out if it was opened and enjoyed during the holidays and has remained in the fridge since then. tin cc-ong, that sounds wilk at first read, but good vanilla ice cream has a high fat content, so it might work, but make sure it doesn’t have other additives or fillers like carageenan/seaweed.

    Jan 24, 2009 | 5:41 am

     
  50. danney says:

    Thanks so much for the info regarding jamon serrano and cheese with mold.

    Jan 24, 2009 | 7:46 am

     
  51. betty q. says:

    Quiapo: it is so easy to make! If you try it, your wife will not buy anymoe store-bought ones. Do you have access to canned Mango Pulp? If you do, buy the Alphonsus Mango Pulp not the Kesar ones. If you are back home though, puree enough mangoes to yield 3 cups. Now it containes enzymes that will break down gelatine. So if you are using Manila mangoes (fresh ones), heat it up to kill the enzymes and let it cool down. If yoou are using the canned ones(available at East Indian grocery stores), 1 can is 28 oz. and yields 3 cups of mango pulp.

    3 cups of mango pulp(1-28 oz or 750 ml. can)
    3 envelopes unflavoured Knox gelatine
    2 cups water
    a little less than 1 cup sugar (esp. if mangoes are sweet)
    1 cup heavy cream or half and half

    Sprinkle gelatine over 2 cups cold water. Stir to distribute evenly. let it sit a few minutes so granules will expand. Then put in a small pot and heat to dissolve the gelatine. When it is dissolved and not GRITTY anymore, Add the sugar and rest of ingredients. Transfer to moulds and refrigerate. To make it even more creamier, you can sub the heavy cream with vanilla ice cream.

    See how easy it is to make….very, easy and quick, and really really, really good! My recipe yields a mango pudding that is not cloyingly sweet, and not rubbery and redolent of mango flavour, pure natural goodness, no artificial flavouring except if you use the ice cream. This mango pudding, I can finish a whole pyrex dish of it and so can my hubby.

    Oh, this will yield 3-9 inch pans (glass or plastic), and about 1 inch thick.

    Jan 24, 2009 | 8:17 am

     
  52. betty q. says:

    Quiapo …wait! i forgot to add 1 more cup water. …total is 3 cups water…OK? I usually dissolve the sugar in the other 1 cup water and the gelatine in the 2 cups cold water. It doesn’t make a difference though whether you dissolve the gelatine in the 3 cups cold water and heat it up. I just find it easier to stir the sugar to dissolve it in the other 1 cup water while I am heating up the gelatine /water….to save time…and combine them later.

    Jan 24, 2009 | 8:23 am

     
  53. bluegirl says:

    Mango Pudding.. Yum, yum! Betty Q, I have access to frozen mango puree. Will that work as a replacement for Mango Pulp?

    Jan 24, 2009 | 8:59 am

     
  54. betty q. says:

    As long as it is not FRESH frozen type! If it is, it will still work provided you heat it up to kill the enzymes. As I have said, those enzymes present in some fruits like pineapple, kiwi will not make your gelatine set.

    Where are you. bluegirl?

    Jan 24, 2009 | 9:10 am

     
  55. sister says:

    betty q. have you tried beating the cream until almost stiff and folding it into the mango gelatine mixture (slightly chilled) so then you have a fluffy mango mousse? Substitute 1 c. cooked light pastry cream for 1 cup. water and eliminate the sugar. Line a charlotte mold with ladyfingers dipped in rum, pour in mango mousse, chill to set, unmold, and serve with fresh mango (add lemon juice) coulis. That’s really ramping up mango pudding! Marketman, try this for your next dinner party.

    Jan 24, 2009 | 10:28 am

     
  56. bluegirl says:

    Betty Q, I live Saipan, in the Marianas Islands… Yikes, I know what you’re thinking.. Where is that?!!! It’s in middle of the Pacific, about 30 mins by air from Guam. History buff might recognize the place as the closest island to us is Tinian where the atom bombs dropped on Hiroshima & Nagasaki were launched.

    Our weather is very tropical and we have mangoes here. However, they’re the very fibrous Indian mango type. Some days I feel like I’m eating corn hair with mango flavoring (LOL!)

    I’ll check out what the description says on the frozen puree.

    Jan 24, 2009 | 10:59 am

     
  57. betty q. says:

    Hay, Sister! In the restaurant, I do individual charlottes and yup, what you do whipping the ceam is carrying this mango pudding to a higher level or upgrading it! Another one, is cutting angel food cake into large CUBES and folding it into this mango mousse making it like a tropical Savannah cake…Savannah cake is a popular dessert at Commander Palace in New Orleans. I made this mango mousse in the beginning for my in-laws who are Chinese. It was sitting in the fridge for days. So I figured it was too rich for them. So, I made it like Chinese style in the morning. Before the day ended, I was loking for some, and it was all gone!

    Teka muna….sorry MM …we have diverted this post into Mango Musse now! Now, I know how my shared recipes can get buried!!! I am so sorry Myrna!!! I still haven’t located the Pancit!!!

    MM. once you have tried it and you think it is worth posting, by all means please do so. it will save me a lot of time TYPING!!!!

    Jan 24, 2009 | 11:15 am

     
  58. Mimi says:

    I tried the 6 whole eggs (XL size kampong eggs) + 1 can (397 g) Milkmaid condensed milk + 370 ml fresh full cream milk + 1 dayap rind -steeped the dayap rind in the milk for about 15 minutes, mixed everything gently with a spoon, then sieved twice, discard dayap. Melted 2 Tbsp white sugar for each of the 3 llaneras and made the caramel right in the llanera. Bain marie method for 1 hr 30 minutes because the oven temperature was at 300F. My husband said that it tasted “pinoy” more so than the usual all-yolk which I make. The leche flan was smooth and had no bubbles. The sweetness factor was just right.

    Jan 24, 2009 | 11:38 am

     
  59. mike says:

    love love love love leche flan.. perfect food. it has protein, carbohydrate and fat:)

    Jan 24, 2009 | 7:38 pm

     
  60. Myrna says:

    Betty Q., I am still dreaming of your Pancit Malabon ‘coz mine is just so-so. Just a suggestion: you said you e-mailed it to MM and another person, how about going back to your e-mail old files and copy/paste it to this site? Hope it works!

    Jan 25, 2009 | 1:35 am

     
  61. michelle h. says:

    The leche flan I grew up with always had a silky but firm texture, or as my grandmother describes it, “maligat” – the equivalent of “al dente” for pasta. I wonder if this texture is what some of you object to as being “rubbery”. I guess the nostalgia factor really is huge because I’m not at all fond of the softer, jiggly flans :)

    Jan 25, 2009 | 3:59 am

     
  62. Jade186 says:

    Has anybody tried using coconut milk (fresh gata or canned) instead of cow/carabao’s milk? How about soy milk?

    Jan 25, 2009 | 8:33 am

     
  63. amee says:

    Hi MM.

    Interesting entry. I’ve been on a leche flan quest the past few months, figuring out the best way to make it. Still in the trial and error process, but after this entry, I think I am inspired to give it a few more attempts.

    Jan 27, 2009 | 1:49 am

     
  64. Maki says:

    waaaaaaaaaaa.. tulo ako laway.. tsk tsk tsk

    Jan 27, 2009 | 2:22 am

     
  65. Leilani says:

    i would like to share this simple recipe for leche flan:

    1 can evaporated milk (any brand will do)
    1 can condensed milk ( -ditto- )
    10 egg yolks
    1/2 tsp of either vanilla or almond extract

    prepare caramel sauce by cooking sugar in a saucepan in very low heat till golden brown. 3 cups sugar more or less yields enough caramel for 5 llaneras.
    mix all ingredients in a bowl. stirring gently till all ingredients are well blended. use the gentlest of hands when mixing, you do not want to incorporate air bubbles into the mixture. strain over a fine strainer when pouring into llaneras. cover llaneras tightly with foil. bake in a bain marie oven 375’F for 1 hour.

    i have tried this personally and results always yield a silky smooth leche flan! never fail recipe. good luck to you MM!

    Jan 27, 2009 | 5:54 am

     
  66. jenny says:

    i’ve always made my leche flan by cooking it on a steamer . i try the bain marie method that you recommend. I was so happy !!!! it was the silkiest leche flan i’ve ever tasted in my whole life!i always check your website at least once a day.it always inspires to cook more filipino food. i am not a good cook but from all your post it helped me a lot.thank you so much!!!!!

    Jan 27, 2009 | 8:48 am

     
  67. mayums says:

    all the flans up there makes me crave for some. i wouldn’t mind the bubble-full version for now if only to quell my craving.

    Jan 27, 2009 | 4:39 pm

     
  68. Umm_Jakob says:

    have you tried pumpkin flan yet? they’re soo good and less guilt-free to eat.

    Jan 27, 2009 | 8:23 pm

     
  69. dhayL says:

    betty Q & MM, thanks for the advice..

    Jan 27, 2009 | 11:25 pm

     
  70. raissa says:

    MM – while I like dayap I prefer the vanilla one which I only get to taste back in the Philippines when our housekeeper who my Lolo trained would make it but here my Lola makes it with dayap but she did promise to make one exception for me one of these days – with vanilla.

    Jan 29, 2009 | 3:53 am

     
  71. Pat says:

    I received a gift of flan (I love it, but never made it). It’s huge! Can it (or portions of it) be frozen?

    Jun 13, 2009 | 9:19 pm

     
  72. cwid says:

    My dear Betty Q, I tried your mango pudding recipe and it was delicious! You are so generous with your recipes and I thank you so much for that. I once asked a friend for her mango pudding recipe but I was brushed off with “Secret!”. Never asked again. This same friend decorated the top of her pudding with a design similar to “coffee art” but I have not done this successfully yet. Perhaps, with one more try.

    We have not heard from you for ages. I hope you are doing well and enjoying the great weather we are having in Vancouver.

    Jun 17, 2010 | 7:13 am

     
 

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