The other day I was at the grocery store, minding my own business in the Latin-American food aisle, when I spied a can of pre-made dulce de leche! I was unreasonably excited about this, but you’ve got to understand that it was the first time I’d ever actually seen it in real life– I’d always been told it was available, but I’d never seen it for myself.
Rather, I’d been reduced to making it from sweetened condensed milk, either using the highly dangerous boiling-the-can method, or the slow oven method. In any event, I was thrilled to find it ready-made, and even more thrilled that I’d finally be able to make my very favorite dulce de leche flan, which I first made about fifteen years ago and have pined after ever since.
This flan is amazingly creamy and smooth, with a nice caramelly flavor from the dulce de leche. Don’t overcook or you’ll lose the texture– the center should be jiggly when you shake the pan in the oven, and it’ll cook the rest of the way after you take it out.
Dulce du Leche Flan
Adapted from Cooking Light
14oz (405g) can of dulce de leche
3 large eggs
2 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
- Place sugar and water in a small pan and bring it to a boil. Let the mixture keep boiling, occasionally swirling the pan but not stirring, as it slowly caramelizes. Once it’s a nice amber-brown, pour it into the bottom of a 9″ round pan or six one-cup ramekins. Place the caramel-lined pan(s) into a large baking dish.
- Scoop your dulce de leche into a bowl and beat in the eggs and egg yolks one at a time– it’ll take a while for the first one to incorporate, but will get easier every time.
- Add the vanilla, and slowly pour in the milk, whisking the whole time. Pour into your caramel-lined pan(s).
- Pour hot (boiling is perfect) water into the large baking dish to come up about halfway up the sides of your filled pan(s).
- Transfer to the oven and bake 30-40 minutes, depending on pan size. When you think the flan might be done, jiggle the baking dish gently and see if the centers are liquid or more like a soft jello. You’re looking for the latter. Do not overbake– you’ll lose the fabulous creamy texture.
- Once done, remove the baking dish from the oven and remove the flans from the baking dish to cool. Chill until completely cold.
- To unmold, run a thin knife around the edge of your pans to loosen the edges, then invert over a plate (hopefully with a lip on it to catch the caramel sauce). Enjoy!