Saturday, May 29, 2010

Introducing the Flan

Today I'll share with you a little French dessert. But the base of the batter is so simple that you can make it a dessert of any country : simply choose a typical fruit. It is also a recipe that only uses basic ingredients. Again, it depends on the personality you want to give to your dessert. I poured a bit of rum and used the fruits I had on hand. But the possibilities are almost endless, just like fillings you put in a good scone. So cook me a Flan, and I'll keep you no grudge.

Flan is comparable to clafoutis. But it's typical of Limousin and is composed exclusively of cherries. Here I used cranberries, but they are not as juicy and fragrant as the first. The base of the dough looks like pancake batter, but you have to pour everything into a single dish instead of stirring. Now, there are as many variations as fruits on Earth. Clafoutis, flan, flaugnarde, everything is a matter of region ... and taste buds.

Ingredients for 6 servings:
100g flour
150g sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 eggs (yolks and whites separated)
250ml milk
50g butter
2 teaspoons rum
2 apples
3 handfuls of cranberries
vanilla sugar

Preheat oven to 180 ° C.

In a pan, melt the butter in milk over low heat. Stir regularly. When the mixture is smooth, remove from heat.
In a bowl, mix together flour, sugar and baking powder. Break the eggs but reserve the whites. Mix the yolks with the rest. Slowly pour the milk over, while stirring vigorously to avoid lumps. Beware though, if the milk is too hot, you may cook the yolks. You might just do with a safe check. Add the rum.

Cut your apples into medium quarters (1cm on the edge).
Separately, stiffly beat your eggwhites with a pinch of salt.
In a buttered dish or covered with parchment paper (I prefer this to give the recipe a rustic personnality), pour the liquid mix. Spread carefully the eggwhites on the surface. For this, use a spatula. Finally, divide the apple wedges and cranberries on top, sprinkle with vanilla sugar and bake for 20 minutes.

The fruit will brown and caramelize on top, while keeping the surface smooth and tender. Eat it as a dessert, a snack or breakfast. You'll do no wrong.

Detail from the Dutch master of light Johannes Vermeer, The Milkmaid, 1658-1661.

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