Sunday, October 23, 2011

Pumpkin Flan

Right after I got home from Ecuador, I took my nephew up to my aunt and uncle's farm to get some pumpkins. We had different goals, James and I, but we both came home happy. He got a pumpkin 'big enough to fit Poppy (his sister) in', as well as some quality time admiring the tractors. I scored 15 pie pumpkins. My plan was to make pumpkin pie for Thanksgiving, but we were missing something crucial, though I can't remember what it was now. That left me with a cooked pumpkin, so I brought it home and got to work. I made a pumpkin loaf, which was delicious, but got eaten before the camera-computer issue got fixed. Then I made this, which is just like pumpkin pie filling without the crust, and with a caramel sauce. It's smooth, creamy, dense and pumpkiny. 
Pumpkin Flan
Serves 8 according to the recipe, but I think it's enough for at least 12--it's quite rich
Source: Adapted from Gourmet Today
2 cups sugar
1 cup heavy cream
1½ cups whole milk
5 large eggs
1 large egg yolk
15 ounces pumpkin puree (I used fresh, but this is equivalent to one can)
2 tablespoons dark rum
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
¼ teaspoon salt
a handful of pumpkin seeds for garnish (optional)

2-quart/liter souffle or round casserole dish (I used small ramekins)

Preheat oven to 350℉.

Heat 1 cup sugar with ¼ cup water in a heavy saucepan over medium heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved, brushing down the edges of the pan with a wet brush to rinse away any sugar crystals. Boil until it is a dark amber colour, then immediately pour into dish or dishes and swirl to distribute evenly. Set aside while you make the flan.

Bring the cream and milk to a simmer in a heavy saucepan over medium heat (I used the same saucepan, and didn't bother to wash it--the hardened caramel with dissolve). Whisk the eggs, yolk and remaining sugar together until well blended. Add the pumpkin, rum, vanilla, spices and salt and whisk. Add the hot cream mixture in a stream while whisking. Pour mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl, pushing mixture with a spatula to force it through. Pour custard into caramel lined dish or dishes. Place into a large roasting pan, place pan in preheated oven and then pour boiling water to come at least halfway up sides of dish. Bake until flan is golden brown on top (small ones won't brown as much) and a knife inserted in the centre comes out clean, about 1¼ hours. Transfer dish to a rack to cool. Once cool, cover and refrigerate for at least 6 hours, overnight is even better. The longer it sits, the more caramel dissolves, giving more sauce.

To serve:
Run a thin knife around the edges of the flan to loosen it. Shake the dish gently until the flan moves freely in dish. Invert a large platter deep enough to catch the caramel sauce over the dish and, holding them tightly together, quickly invert and turn flan out on platter. Sprinkle with pumpkin seeds just before serving.

See you on Thursday with the Daring Bakers' reveal!


Valerie Gamine said...

15 pumpkins! Sounds like you're going to be doing a lot of baking and carving (I get lazy after one). :D

Your flan looks beautiful! I'm not too into pumpkin, but this, this I could enjoy,

juliana alonso dorola said...

wonderfull flan!
i love the color, amazing pumpkin!

Anonymous said...

It certainly is the season for pumpkins! Your flan looks and sounds delicious Mary.

Evelyne CulturEatz said...

Just finally got a small cooking pumpkin from across the street today, this recipe is very tempting. Sounds like you and your nephew had a blast.

Cakelaw said...

What a gorgeous colour this flan has.