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I have series of books I love called Culinaria. These food encyclopedias focus on a country , break it down by region, and give all sorts of recipes, essays, photos,history,culture,and culinary information.A real treasure trove of information. I love these tomes because not only can I read about the familiar,but the non familiar.Culinaria was a concept by German publisher Konemann. I believe they were very expensive at first when published and went out of print. However I fall upon them from time to time in Borders and Costco at reduced prices. I have paid $9.99-$19.99 for these books . Some are hardcover and some reduced paperbacks. So far I have Spain, Germany, Hungary, and France.I love to pick up and read sections of these books, however have never tried a recipe.
One of the first dishes I mastered as a child was a simple flan, or Creme Caramel as I used to say( I was studying French). I love the simplicity and richness of this dessert. Its funny because flan and crema catalana( similar to creme brulees) may actually be attributed to the Spanish origins first.A possibility.Regardless I love this dessert. Culinaria shows a traditional recipe for flan , as well as fried flan( see something new to me!). Flan takes on many variations depending on the region .Who knew something so simple can become so interesting. Any way I'm hibernating today in this Chicago deep freeze , and what better comfort dessert.

Flan Al Caramelo adapted from Culinaria Spain 2004/2007
Caramel Custard
serves 4

* I added a splash of Cointreau for flavor
1 1/4 cups/250 g sugar
4 eggs , plus 2 egg yolks
2 cups/500 ml whole milk

Put half the sugar and 1/2 cup /125 ml of water in sauce pan. Bring to a boil, then turn down and simmer until a thick golden syrup forms.Pour into the four ramekins so the bottoms are evenly coated.
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F/150 C. Beat eggs, remaining sugar, and yolks. Bring milk to a boil and remove from heat. Allow to cool a bit and add gradually to the egg mixture.Pour into ramekins. Place ramekins in a baking dish and fill with water so it comes up halfway to the sides if the ramekins. Bake approx 45 minutes. Check to see if water doesn't evaporate and fill again if necessary.Remove custards from pan and allow to cool. Place ramekins in the refrigerator to continue cooling.
Before serving, dip the base of each ramekin in hot water, and carefully loosen the sides. Turn onto dessert plate and serve.

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Maryann said...

Your flan looks gorgeous :)
I'm in the deep freeze too! (NY)

Proud Italian Cook said...

My hubby loves flan, and orders it everytime we go out and eat mexican(he has a real sweet tooth). He would flip if I made this! Yours looks so good!!! Stay warm!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

I love Könemann's Culinaria books! Your flan looks very tempting!



JennDZ - The Leftover Queen said...

I have the Italy Culinaria book, such a great resource!!! Nice coffee table book too.

I love flan, this looks great!

chou said...

Thanks for the update on Treasure Island--my other half pulled up the Maroon as soon as he *moderated* your comment (I thought that was my job!) and read to me all about it while I washed the pile of dishes my kitchen gave birth to. Much better than Dominicks or Jewel for the neighborhood.

On to flan--I think it's even better than creme brulee. (dodging all thrown kitchen utensils as I say this)

Mary said...

Did you ever see the episode of Sabrina where they kept calling flan "the happy dessert"? Probably not. I'm such a dork.
It's seriously cold here too and your flan looks delicious

linda said...

Great books indeed, I have Italy and Europe. I don't think the recipes are that good, in terms of explanation I mean. But them seem authentic. I love the amount of food info in the books.
Flan is one of my favorite dessert (even though I've never made one myself). Your flan looks very delicious and tempting!

Deborah said...

It sounds like a great series of books! I love flan, but have never made it myself.

Tartelette said...

I love flan. When I was gowing up there was this storebought flan called "flanby" and all you did was nvert the cup, pull our the tab and the air released would drop the flan on your plate...and then people wonder why I am easily amused with sugar!!
Just gorgeous!

Cynthia said...

Turn your face, I'm licking my spoon :)

Ben said...

Hmmm flan! I love flan. I just posted the "impossible cake" (flan and chocolate cake) recipe on my blog. I have made chocolate, coffee, pumpkin and cheese flan and it never disappoints.

Nice blog :D

The Caked Crusader said...

Yummy - how inviting is the dark sauce? A dessert that is screaming for a spoon to be plunged into it!