Flan is something I discovered many years ago while living in Mexico. It quickly became one of my favorite desserts out there. For the ones who never heard of it before, flan is an egg based custard that is baked in a caramel-lined dish in a bain-marie. It is one of the most traditional desserts on Mexico.
I said that this dessert is baked in bain-marie, but what is bain-marie? It is basically a water bath. The custard is placed in a baking dish and then placed into another pan with water in it. The water helps the flan cook evenly by distributing the heat and insulates the custard so that it cooks slower for that creamy, silky texture.
After cooking, the flan is turned out onto a plate for serving.
I tried many versions of flan, from the original one to coffee or coconut, but when I tried for the first time the flan with cream cheese I was very impressed. Creamy, rich and delicious, the flan de queso or cream cheese flan makes a great and quick dessert for a scrumptious grand finale of a dinner with friends or family.
In my opinion, flan is one of the best desserts of Mexico besides the rice pudding, of course. In the Romanian cuisine that I grew up with, we do have a version of flan, we basically call it Cream Caramel Recipe and it is made with milk, sugar and eggs. Very easy and fast to make, the Romanian recipe is a popular dessert that most generations grew up with.
My recipe for the Flan de Queso- Cream cheese flan is also an easy one that I am sure you will come back to it again and again. You can make it in a 9 inch metallic pie pan, flan mold or in individual ramekins. I personally like the ramekins better because I can either have an individual dessert when I want it, but it also looks prettier on the plate when you serve it to your guests.
No matter how you bake it, this recipe is a wonderful delicious dessert that you can serve not only when you have guests. You can make it for a potluck, picnic, or just at the end of the week when you want something simple and sweet. Versatile, as you can skip the cream cheese and make it classic, or add other favorite flavors, like coffee, for example(which I love), this Mexican traditional dessert will be a favorite in your house. You can now make it from scratch if you follow my recipe! Enjoy!
Interested in another flan recipe? Try this Orange-Almond Flan– a Spanish recipe that is gluten and dairy free!
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 14 oz/1 can of condensed milk
- 12 oz/1 can of evaporated milk
- 5 large eggs
- 8 ounces cream cheese
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- Preheat oven to 325F.
- the flan can be baked in a 9inch metallic pie dish or individual ramekins.
- In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, melt sugar until liquefied and golden in color.
- Carefully pour hot syrup into little flan molds(ramekins) or(the pie dish), turning each mold to evenly coat the bottom and sides. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat eggs. Beat in condensed milk, evaporated milk and vanilla until smooth. Add the cheese and keep mixing until smooth. It can also be done in a blender. Pour egg mixture into each baking dish.
- Cover with aluminum foil and place each ramekin into a baking pan. Pour enough hot water into baking pan to come halfway up sides of ramekins.
- Bake until centers of flans are gently set, about 40 minutes.
- Transfer flans to rack and cool. Chill until cold, about 2 hours. Cover and chill overnight.
- To serve, run small sharp knife around flan to loosen.
- Turn over onto plate. Shake gently to release flan.
- Carefully lift off ramekin allowing caramel syrup to run over flan.
- Repeat with remaining flans and serve.