First, let me assure you that this is the smoothest, creamiest, most melt-in-your-mouth leche flan you’ll ever have the pleasure of trying. Second, let me get off on a tangent and share with you a personal story.
The way my ex (husband) wooed me in my youth was through llanera upon llanera of leche flan he made himself. Leche flan is his specialty and he being so good at it, I was eventually won over by visions of a marriage where I would be sitting on the sofa watching TV while he slaved in the kitchen preparing MY dinner.
Well, these visions never quite turned to reality as I found out soon enough, leche flan was how far his kitchen skills went. The way our shared life panned out, he sat on the sofa watching TV while I slaved in the kitchen preparing HIS dinner. But for every party or gathering, he did take charge of the flan-making while I prepared everything else.
Fast forward decades later~the marriage already crumbled, the resident leche flan maker has long wandered into another’s arms~ I find myself standing in the kitchen wanting to make flan and not exactly knowing how. You know how it is when you marry someone and you assume it’s forever? I never wrote down his recipe because I thought he would always be there to make the leche flan.
In my divorce, I had to face the palpable destruction of what is familiar and endure the arduous process of reconstructing myself. With the mercy of time and tears, I am now a surprisingly happy, independent woman living life on her own terms and with no need to apologize for the new four-inch stilletos she bought but will probably never wear. I am now a woman comfortable in her own skin, a woman who has come to terms with the furrows on her face which speak of age and is no longer compelled to compete with the younger flesh she was betrayed for.
I did not cower when the existence I once knew laid askew and I certainly will not now cower to the challenge of making flan. Recipe or no recipe, I’ve watched the man enough times to learn his techniques and I can surely figure out the measurements of eggs and sugar and milk easily on my own. So today, I made my version. Ha! Victory for the scorned woman, I left his in the dust!
- 9 tablespoons sugar
- 12 egg yolks (from large eggs)
- 1 (14 ounces) can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 (12 ounces) can evaporated milk
- 3 llanera molds
- In each llanera, place 3 tablespoons sugar. Set llanera over the stove on low heat and using tongs, move llanera repeatedly over flames until sugar is melted and golden. Continously tilt and swirl the llanera to ensure even melting and to distribute melting liquid on bottom of mold. Remove from heat and allow caramel to cool and harden.
- In a medium bowl, combine egg yolks, evaporated milk and condensed milk. Gently stir in a circular motion until blended. With a cheesecloth, strain egg-milk mixture. Pour strained mixture into prepared llaneras.
- Cover llaneras with foil and arrange in a wide, oven-safe dish with about 1-inch of water (water bath). Bake in a 375 F oven for about 50 minutes to 1 hour or until toothpick inserted in the middle of custard comes out clean. Remove from oven, allow to cool and refrigerate to set. To serve, turn flan over on a serving plate, ending with caramel on top.