Leche flan is one of my go-to Filipino desserts to bring to a holiday party or get-together along with with my other favorites: pineapple glazed ham and pan de sal. It’s a delicious, sweet and creamy custard that is always a crowd-pleaser.
What is Leche Flan?
Leche flan is a popular Filipino dessert that is often served during special events or occasions like Christmas, Easter and birthday parties. It is normally made in a mold called llanera. A baking pan or ramekins may also be used. The pan is lined with caramel and topped with custard and may be steamed using the stove or baked in a hot water bath. After baking or steaming, the custard is cooled and then chilled in the fridge for several hours or overnight. To serve, the pan is inverted onto a serving plate and the custard comes out with smooth caramel on top.
Leche flan is made with the following ingredients:
- Sugar – used to make the caramel topping
- Eggs – 8 egg yolks are used to get that delicious custard taste and texture
- Condensed Milk – condensed milk is used to sweeten and add creaminess to the dish
- Evaporated Milk
- Lemon or Lime zest – the zest is used to add a subtle citrus note
- Vanilla Extract
How to make Leche Flan?
There are so many ways to make this delicious dessert. This recipe uses a mixture of sweetened condensed milk and evaporated milk. I also added grated lemon rind for extra taste and flavor.
The first step is to create the caramel topping by heating the sugar. Then, the caramel is immediately placed in the leche flan molds and set aside. To make the flan, the egg yolks are beaten before adding the condensed milk. Then, the evaporated milk and water are added to the mixture along with the citrus zest and vanilla. Finally, the mixture is poured into the molds and baked in a water bath.
- ½ cup sugar
- 8 egg yolks
- 1 can (300 ml) sweetened condensed milk
- ¾ cup evaporated milk
- ¾ cup water
- ¼ tsp finely grated lemon or lime zest
- ½ tsp vanilla extract
- Position the oven rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
- In a heavy saucepan, melt the sugar over medium high heat. Cook, without stirring, until sugar starts to caramelize, about 4 minutes.
- Immediately pour the caramel over an 8-inch round pan or distribute the caramel into two leche flan molds (llanera). Tip the pan or molds side to side to distribute the caramel evenly. Set aside.
- In a large bowl, beat the egg yolks until well blended. Add the condensed milk and stir to mix thoroughly.
- Pour the evaporated milk and water into the yolk mixture. Add the lemon rind and vanilla, and mix well. Pour the mixture into the pan or molds.
- Place a kitchen towel in the bottom of a large roasting pan and then place the prepared pan or molds on top of the kitchen towel. Pour enough hot water in the roasting pan to come halfway up the sides of the pan or molds.
- Carefully place the roasting pan in the oven. Bake the custard in the hot water bath until set, about 1 hour.
- Let the custard cool in the water bath for 20 minutes and then refrigerate to chill for several hours or overnight.
- To serve, run a knife around the side of the pan and quicky turn the custard into a serving plate. Pour excess caramel in the pan over the custard.