Cuban Flan

The Noa family lived upstairs from us when I was a boy. Señora Noa thought I was too skinny. She would make me eat something every time i visited. Her flan was the first that I had tasted and I fell in love. My wife also makes a tasty flan too. I am sure this is not as good, but I tried. The key to a good flan is the caramel coating! This makes 8 individual servings but you can make one big flan too.




1 1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp Key Lime Juice
1 (14-ounce/420-mL) can sweetened condensed milk
1 (12-ounce/360-mL) can evaporated milk
2 large eggs, slightly beaten
6 egg yolks, slightly beaten
2 teaspoons vanilla extract


  1. Prepare the ramekins. In a non-stick saucepan over medium heat add a tsp of water, Key Lime juice and melt sugar until it turns into a dark caramel, 9 to 10 minutes. As the sugar liquefies into caramel move the pan around but do not stir it. (Watch closely during the last few minutes to make sure it does not burn.) Keep swirling the pan after you remove the caramel from the heat, as the caramel will keep cooking. You have to work quickly. Pour about 2 tablespoons of the caramel, covering the bottoms of each of 8 cup sized (120-ml) ramekins and turn the ramekins to coat the sides with caramel too. Let them cool. The caramel will harden and look like glass.
  2. When cooled, set them in a baking dish with high sides. Fill the baking dish until water comes half way up the sides of he ramekins.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  4. In a mixing bowl, combine the condensed milk, evaporated milk, eggs, egg yolks and vanilla and whisk until smooth. Pouring the mixture through a sifter into large pitcher will remove any large pieces of egg white and make filling the ramekins easier. Divide the custard mixture evenly into the prepared ramekins. Cover each ramekin tightly with aluminum foil. Fill the baking dish with warm water halfway up the sides of the ramekins and gently place the pan in the oven.
  5. Bake the flan for 45 minutes, or until you can insert a toothpick in the middle of the custard and it comes out clean. Let the ramekins cool in the water bath, then refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
  6. Traditionally flan is served upside down with the camel running down the sides. To do this run a paring knife around the edge of the ramekin; place a plate over the top and invert the ramekin and plate. Once turned over, shake the ramekin it a bit to release the flan and caramel onto the plate.