For years I’ve relied on the packaged flan mixes. Making my own just seemed too complicated. Then, I found a recipe in Better Homes and Gardens that made all the difference. It was so easy and SO much better than a box mix. Of course, the difference between half and half and 2% milk may have something to do with it. Given the fat calories, this is a special occasion dish.
3 cups half and half
2 tsp vanilla extract
½ c packed dark brown sugar
½ tsp salt
½ cup granulated sugar
In a medium saucepan, heat the half and half and vanilla over medium heat until steaming. Remove from the heat and allow to steep for at least 15 minutes.
Preheat oven to 350.
Combine brown sugar and 1/4 tsp of the salt. Spoon the mixture into a 9" pie plate and pack it into a firm, even layer.
Reheat the half and half to steaming once it's done steeping.
Whisk the eggs, granulated sugar and 1/4 tsp salt. Gradually whisk in the warm half and half until well combined.
Slowly pour the egg mixture over the brown sugar. Some of the brown sugar will float to the top, but as the flan cooks, it will sink back to the bottom of the pan.
Place the pie pan in a deep roasting pan. Place the pan in the oven and pour boiling water to halfway up the sides of the pie pan. Note: I just baked mine without the folderal of the water bath and it was fine.
Bake 35-40 min until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool for 30 min then refrigerate overnight or at least 6 hours prior to serving. Note: I served mine right away and it was still great but a bit runny.
To serve, run a knife around the edges and invert onto a serving plate.