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Friday, April 18, 2014

Kem Flan (Crème Caramel)

It has been flan fever in my kitchen since I got this new recipe. Thanks to Ha V who visited me recently.  After a big lunch, I served her my flan. She then shared a favorite of hers and said that everyone who's ever had it, loved it; she was not over-exaggerating. I like my original flan recipe but this one is even better.  The texture is silky smooth.  Even my girls agreed.  They were asking for more.  Though I did make some minor changes to the recipe for my own taste,  I am sure it wouldn't have made a difference.  

Flan is served cold and back in the old days - at least in Pleiku where I grew up - I recalled that flan was served with shaved ice to keep it cold.  Flan is delicate and decadent; it's usually served as a small and round cut.  I like to garnish flan with fruits such as blueberries, raspberries and strawberries to not only balance the flavor and sweetness of the caramel sauce, but also to bring out its beauty.
make 7-8 flans

400 ml Milk (1 3/4 cups)
300 ml Heavy Whipping Creme (1 1/4 cups)
5 Egg Yolks
1 whole Egg
1/4 teaspoon Vanilla Powder
6 tablespoons Sugar

For Caramel Sauce
1/2 cup Sugar
1 tablespoon Espresso, optional

Turn oven to 350 degree.  Make a water bath for flan by placing a baking tray in the middle rack of the oven and add boiling hot water to 2/3 of the tray.  
Making Caramel Sauce

Cook sugar in a sauce pan over a moderate heat. Watch the sugar closely as it heats. As the sugar begins to melt and turn from a clear liquid to a golden brown color around the edges, use a spatula move the liquefied sugar gently from the edges of the saucepan to the center. Be careful not to over stir the caramel-the sugar may start to clump up before it has a chance to melt. Caramel is done when it is just past the smoking point, and it has a deep amber color. At this point, turn off the heat and add the espresso if you like the taste of it.

Immediately, spoon a couple teaspoons of caramel sauce into each ramekin.  Set aside.

Click here to buy ramekins.

Preparing Eggs

In a bowl, add eggs and gently mix until it's well blended.  Set aside.
Preparing Milk Mixture

In a pot combine milk, heavy whipping cream and sugar and cook until the milk mixture is warm and sugar is dissolved.

Turn off heat and let it cool down.  You might want to transfer it to another bowl to speed up the cooling process.  
Preparing Flan Mixture

Once the milk mixture is cooled down, add eggs and vanilla powder. Gently mix until blended.

Use a strainer to strain the mixture to remove any egg shell or tiny pieces of egg white.

Pour mixture into ramekins.

Baking Flan

Arrange the ramekins in the hot water bath.  Place a piece of foil loosely on top of the flan tray to prevent flan from burning.

Bake for about 50 minutes, depends on your oven and the size of the ramekin.  The flan is ready to be removed from the oven when the edges are set. Gently shake the ramekin, the center of the custard should jiggle slightly. You can also insert the tip of a toothpick into the custard near the center. If the flan is still liquid, it needs more time in the oven.  Remove from the water bath and let them cool down.


Keep flans cold in the fridge until serving.  Refrigerating the flan overnight is best.  When ready to eat, use a knife to loosen the edge by going around the ramekin before flipping it onto a plate.

Serve by it self or with a scoop of shaved ice placed on top of the flan.

As an extra, you can also add a half teaspoon of fresh coffee or espresso onto the flan for a more complex flavor.  

Bon Appeite!


  1. Hi Chi Loan,

    Stumbled on your blog and Facebook while in search of an ez Ca Kho To recipe. Enjoyed reading your blog and your girls are adorable with gifted hands like their mom in the kitchen and everywhere else it appears. You are a sheer inspiration as I'm enjoying motherhood to my girls, now 4 and 1.5 yro. and showing them life skills in the kitchen and elsewhere. Thank you! Michele Mai

  2. been a long time reader of your blog and happy to report that most of the recipes I've tried have turned out fabulous, especially this flan!
    btw, where did you get those cute clear cups?

  3. @Mai: thank you for taking your time to drop me a comment. Much appreciate it.

  4. @beeline: I am glad my recipes work for you :-). The glass ramekins are from Costco that come with creme brûlée. My friend gave me the ramekins after she ate the creme brûlée. But you can get these glass ramekins at Amazon. I prefer these as you can stack them up since they come with lids. Below is a link:

  5. Hi ch Loan,
    Theo dõi blog cua ch lâu rồi và rất thich may món ch làm. Thấy món bánh flan cua ch ngon quá nên em qdinh cuoi tuan nay se lam thử recipe của ch. Recipe cua ch thì làm đươc may cai vậy ch? Em thấy luc ch trình bày phần bánh co phần nước đường bên duoi. Vay mình làm thêm nuoc đường đổ vào hả chi? Cam ơn ch nhiều

    1. Recipe này làm được 7-9 cái tuỳ theo cái chén lớn hay nhỏ. Sau khi bánh chín, đường dưới đáy của chén sẽ tan ra chứ không phải Loan làm thêm nước đường đổ vào đâu.

    2. Hi chi Loan,
      Em làm thành công rồi. Thanks for your recipe. It tastes really good.

  6. This will sound ridiculous but is 1 1/3 cup means 1 cup and 1/3 cup milk or just 1/3 cup milk?

  7. It is 1 cup and 1/3 cup. Sorry for the confusion .

  8. If I don't have vanilla powder available, can I use vanilla extract and how many teaspoon? Thank you.