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Traditional Brazilian Flan

Traditional Brazilian Flan

Chef Shawn Smith

Braza, www.hottomatos.net, Hartford, CT


  • For the caramel:
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • For the custard:
  • 4 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 can evaporated milk
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 5 eggs


In a sauce pan combine sugar, 1/3 cup water, and 2 teaspoons vanilla. Cook until caramelized and dark brown (300 degrees on a candy thermometer). Watch carefully that mixture does not burn.
Spray 6 molds or ramekins with non-stick spray. Then, very carefully, pour the caramel into molds and swirl so that the bottoms are coated.
In a large bowl, whisk together vanilla, milk(s) and eggs. Pour mixture into molds so that they are about 3/4 full. Set the molds of flan in a water bath. Bake at 350 degrees F until set, 25-30 minutes. Serves 6.


Recommended wine/beer for Traditional Brazilian Flan:

Noval Porto Special Reserve [Douro Valley, Portugal]

There is no more traditional dessert in any Latin country than a caramelized flan. There is also no greater sweet wine produced in Portugal than Porto. Why would anyone resolve to keep them apart? This fortified red wine [brandy was added mid-way to arrest fermentation so as to preserve a fair measure of residual sweetness] features a flavor profile that includes dried fruits, roasted nuts, licorice and caramel—a combination that mates seamlessly with the flan. What you don’t finish tonight, will keep perfectly well for a couple of weeks in the refrigerator.