There are a lot of typical desserts you can make with pumpkin.  Pumpkin roll, pumpkin pie, pumpkin cookies, etc.  Sometimes, though, you need something a little different.  Something rich, something sweet, something that really showcases the taste of pumpkin without it being cloyed and masked by heaps of flour.

I have your answer.

Pumpkin Flan

Recipe after the jump!

Flan is an interesting kind of dessert, and it’s a touch time consuming, but it’s well worth it.

For this recipe, you will need four ramekins.  I use the little Corningware ones, they do an excellent job and are very pretty as well!  This recipe contains two parts: making the caramel and then the custard.

Your ingredients are:

1/2 cup sugar

1/3 cup water

(this is for your caramel)

4 whole eggs

1/3 cup sugar

1 cup pumpkin

1/4 cup fat free evaporated milk

1/2 cup milk (2% and up, folks.  No skim milk.  It doesn’t work)

1 1/2 tsp pumpkin spice

1 tsp vanilla extract

Ina small sauce pan, combine the 1/2 cup of sugar and 1/3 cup water.  Mix it together, then put it over low heat.  Stir it for a while, making sure the sugar dissolves, until it starts to simmer.  After that, no stirring.  Watch this carefully!!  Sugar can burn very quickly, and you’ll be left with a, uh, fragrant and annoying mess to clean up, not to mention you’ll have to start over again.  While the sugar is simmering, take out your ramekins and make sure they are nice and clean.  Have them handy, when the sugar is finished, you’ll need to work quick.

Now, watch the sugar until the mixture starts to change color.  It will be a light amber at first.  Turn off the heat and swirl the sugar syrup around.  The color will deepen to a medium amber.  This is what you want.  Evenly distribute this mixture into the bottom of the ramekins, giving each ramekin a swirl to make sure the caramel coats the bottom of the container.  You will need to move fast here because the caramel will harden as its temperature rapidly drops, as it’s at the hard tack stage of cooked sugar.

Once you have prepared the ramekins, get out a 9×13 pyrex dish.  Set your ramekins in the dish.  Preheat your oven to 350°F.

In a separate dish, whisk together your eggs and 1/3 cup sugar until well mixed.  Mix in the pumpkin, vanilla, and pumpkin spice, and mix until smooth.

In a medium sauce pan, heat up water until just before boiling.  Remove the water from the burner and pour it into the pyrex dish for a water bath.  Do NOT get any in the ramekins, rather pour the water around it.

In the medium saucepan, combine the evaporated milk  and regular milk and warm it up.  Don’t make it too hot, just enough where it’s a bit warm on the tip of your finger.  When the surface of the milk lightly steams.  Remove it from the heat.  Mix in the egg and pumpkin mixture, then pour the mixture into the ramekins.  Divide it up evenly.  Put the entire baking dish into the oven, and bake it, water and all, for 35 minutes.

It will be finished if you can slip the tines of a fork into the custard and it comes out clean.  Take the baking dish out and let them cool at room temperature for about 20 minutes.  When they are ready, grab yourself a small dessert plate.  Take a butter knife and run it around the edge of the custard, then place the dinner plate on top and flip the entire thing over so the ramekin is upside down and the plate is right side up.

Hold your breath.  Remove the ramekin.

Feast your eyes.

Pumpkin Flan

 

Isn’t it beautiful?

 

Pumpkin Flan

 

The caramel that you made will not only cap this tasty flan,  but will drizzle down the sides for you to lick off the plate later.

By the way, this is not good for your cholesterol.  Just sayin’.

Enjoy!

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