Spanish cuisine is known for its use of fresh fruits, often combined with creamy flans and custards and arranged for spectacular eye appeal and even better taste. We enjoy experimenting with a variety of desserts inspired by Spanish cuisine and wanted to share a few of our successes that quickly became favorites among friends and family.
This recipe does not require you to be a professional chef and part of its appeal is in the simplicity of preparation and the elegance in appearance and mouth-wateringflavor. It serves 6.
- 1 pint fresh ripe strawberries, hulled, washed and diced
- 14 ounces canned condensed milk
- 6 large eggs or 8 medium
- 3/4 cup granulated white sugar
- 1/2 c. granulated white sugar for carmelizing
- Fresh mint leaves
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 40 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes
Optional: Reserve about 4-5 diced fresh strawberries for garnish.
Heat the oven to 350 degrees F. On a burner heated to medium, place a heavy skillet and warm for approximately 20 -30 seconds. Pour 1/2 cup granulated sugar and using a wooden spoon, move the sugar quickly and consistently until it is melted. Constant movement is required until the color reaches a medium brown. Pour the caramelized sugar into 6 ramekins, divided equally and set aside.
Place eggs, sugar, condensed milk and all but five tbsp of the diced strawberries in a blender and mix until thoroughly mixed. Pour the strawberry mixture into the ramekins until filled to the rim. Place aluminum foil over each ramekin. The next step is to use a large ovenproof baking pan and add very hot water to the inside. Place ramekins in the pan so they are submerged 75% within the water. This is called a bano Maria or water bath. Place the pan with the ramekins in the preheated oven and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the ramekins from the water and uncover them and set out to cool. After they are no longer oven hot, transer each ramekin to the refrigerator and chill them thoroughly.
Use a thin knife blade around the outside of each ramekin to loosen the contents without disturbing the form. Turn the ramekin onto a serving plate and flip to allow the flan to fall onto the plate. You may gently tap the ramekin if the flan does not easily loosen. Garnish with mint and fresh strawberries. Whipped cream may be added if desired, and serve to your guests.
You may substitute the strawberries with a variety of other fruits and berries. This dessert is fun to experiment with. Be original and create your own versions with a variety of different garnishes for aesthetic grandeur.