Thursday, January 1, 2009

Yam Flan

This is one of my favorite twists on the flan, this adds a nice texture to the flan but keeps the caramel on the bottom of the custard, as usual.

To start, find a pan glass or ceramic to coat the caramel and put the custard in. I usually will use a 9x11 Pyrex dish, or one that has about the same surface.

To make the caramel,
Take the sugar and put in a saucepan on medium high heat.
Add the water and stir ONCE.
Then let it cook until the sugar water mixture turns a dark amber, go ahead and swirl the pan to be sure it is all mixed. Be sure and do not let the mixture turn much darker because it will burn and you will have a hard time cleaning out the burnt sugar.
Take the hot caramel and carefully put it into the glass dish, be sure and swirl it around to coat the whole dish and up on the sides a little.
Be very care full because it is very hot and will burn very bad should you get it on yourself..... ( Caramel lesson #1)

Set the pan to the side or into the refrigerator.

TO make the custard-flan.

Put cream into a medium saucepan add the vanilla extract and cinnamon sticks. Turn on the heat to a medium a and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat and let the cinnamon soak for at least one hour. Strain out the cinnamon.

Find a pan that you can put the glass dish into and have it be surrounded with water half way up the Pyrex dish with the caramel in it. (This is called a water bath or bain marie.) This is done so that the cooking heat will be even and gentle while in the oven.
Preheat the oven to 325degrees.

Boil some water, enough to fill the bigger pan.

In a large bowl, add the now cooled cream , sugar, crushed yams allspice, cloves, eggs rum and Kahlua.
Take a whisk and combine into a homogenized mixture.
Pour into the glass dish.
Put the dish into the oven, immediately put the hot water which you boiled, so it it comes up halfway up the dish with the custard in it.

Bake in the oven for about 1 hour, open the oven door and shake the inside pan a little to see if it has firmed up. If your oven runs hot, it may be done, otherwise it can take anywhere from about 15 to 30 minutes more.

When the center is kind of firm but jiggles a little, remove from the oven and let cool.

When cool, cut or scoop into serving dishes, you can top with whipped cream flavored with Kahlua or just plain whipped cream and sugar. Or not.

You can use sweet potato in place of yams if you only have Sweet Potatoes.

You also could take some canned pumpkin , the kind you buy to make pumpkin pie, and substitute it for the yams, the flan will then become a Pumpkin Flan........

Stuff you will need:

for the Caramel

2 Cups sugar
2 cups water

For the Flan

4 Cups half and
half or Cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 Cinnamon Sticks (whole)
3/4 cups sugar
3/4 cups brown sugar (packed firm)
1 TBS ground cinnamon
1TBS ground allspice
1 TBS ground cloves
5 whole eggs
6 egg yolks
1/4 cup dark rum
1/4 cup Kahlua
1 lb baked Yams, peeled and pureed or canned.

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