Coffee, Cinnamon & Muscovado Sugar Flans

These caramel-coated Mexican coffee custards are adapted from The New Sugar & Spice: A Recipe for Bolder Baking by Samantha Seneviratne of Love, Cake.
Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 30 minutes
Total: 50 minutes
Servings: 4 -5 servings
Author: The Bojon Gourmet

Ingredients

  • ¼ cup water, (60 ml)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar, (100 g)
  • 1 ¾ cups whole milk, (415 ml)
  • ¼ cup heavy cream, (60 ml)
  • ¼ cup coffee beans, crushed or coarsely ground, (20 g)
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • ¼ cup + 2 tablespoons dark muscovado sugar (or organic dark brown sugar), (70 g)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 large egg yolk

Instructions

  • Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 325ºF. Have ready 4 (8-ounce) or 5 (6-ounce) oven-proof ramekins or canning jars and a 9” square baking pan (or other baking vessel large enough to hold your ramekins). Have your ramekins warm when you add the caramel to discourage cracking; you can do this by placing them on top of the hot oven.
  • Place the water in a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan. Place the sugar in the center of the pot, taking care to keep the sugar crystals away from the sides of the pot. Use your fingers to moisten the sugar. Place the pot over medium heat, cover the pot, and bring to a simmer; the steam will help the sugar dissolve and not crystallize. Remove the lid and continue simmering the sugar mixture until it turns a deep amber, gently tilting the pot to caramelize it evenly, and using a pastry brush dipped in water to wash down any wayward sugar crystals that creep up the sides of the pan.
  • Immediately divide the hot caramel among the warm ramekins, and place the ramekins in the baking pan.
  • In the same saucepan (no need to wash it), combine the milk, cream, crushed coffee beans, cinnamon and salt. Place over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until hot and steamy. Remove from the heat, cover, and let steep 10-15 minutes.
  • Bring a kettle of water to a boil.
  • When the mixture has steeped, stir in the muscovado sugar. Place the eggs and yolk in a medium bowl, whisk to combine, and gradually whisk in the hot milk mixture. Strain the custard through a very fine mesh strainer and into a large measuring pitcher, pressing on the solids to extract all the good stuff. Divide the custard mixture among the ramekins. Cover the pan with a sheet of aluminum foil and pierce with several holes to allow steam to escape. Pull back a corner of the foil and fill the pan with enough boiling water to reach halfway up the ramekins. Re-cover with the foil.
  • Very carefully, transfer the pan to the oven. Bake the flans until they wiggle like jell-o when you give the pan a shuffle, 28-35 minutes. Remove from the oven and let the flans cool slightly in the water, 30 minutes, then remove the flans from the pan and let cool to room temperature, 1 hour. Chill the flans at least 4 hours and preferably overnight, and up to 3 days.
  • When ready to serve, use a thin knife or offset spatula to loosen the flans from the edges of the ramekins. Place a plate atop a ramekin, invert, and, grasping the ramekin and plate in both hands, give the flan a few good downward shakes to release it from the ramekin. Carefully remove the ramekin and behold your flan, coated in a nap of liquid caramel gold. Repeat with the remaining flans, and serve immediately.

Notes

Nutritional values are based on one of four servings.

Nutrition

Calories: 312kcal | Carbohydrates: 44g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 162mg | Sodium: 163mg | Potassium: 201mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 44g | Vitamin A: 11.5% | Calcium: 16% | Iron: 3.4%
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