Ryan Thomas is a university student who enjoys cooking recipes from a wide variety of culinary traditions.
I've always loved flan and custards in general. Their creamy goodness, smoothness, richness, and the sweet and delicate flavor that they have are so enticing to me. This one continues such a proud tradition with an emphasis on fruit. It features chunks of pineapple and combines that with the energetic and fresh taste of orange—a flavor fortified by a healthy dose of Grand Marnier orange liqueur. It is large and beautiful; a pale golden colored punctured by the deep gold of the pineapple. It's also delightfully smooth and refreshing to eat—almost refreshing enough to make one forget just how decadently rich it is. And like other flans, it isn't even that difficult to make: heating some milk, adding it to eggs, and then cooking it! A cinch really. If one desires for it to be more beautiful still, it is easy to add on garnishes such as strawberries, chocolate, or whipped cream.
I have adapted this recipe from Bistro Cooking by Patricia Wells, an excellent French cookbook—particularly superb for its dessert section from which I got the inspiration for this recipe!
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- 1 1/2 cups + 3 tablespoons heavy cream
- 1 cup milk
- 1/3 cup Grand Marnier
- 4 eggs
- 4 egg yolks
- 3 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 20 oz can pineapple
- 1 cup sugar
- Combine together the Grand Marnier, the 1 1/2 cup of heavy cream, 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, in a medium-sized saucepan. Over medium heat scald it, and then cover and allow the flavors to combine for 15 minutes.
- Drain the pineapple of its juice (I advise preserving it, as pineapple juice is quite good), and ensure that the pineapple is in appropriate, small-sized wedges. Layer them into the bottom of a large glass or porcelain tart dish, 10 inches across being the minimal size. Place it into a preheated oven at 400 degrees F, for 5 minutes, which helps to reduce the spread of juice when it comes to actually cooking the flan.
- In a large bowl, combine together the egg yolks, the eggs, the flour, the remaining 3 tablespoons heavy cream, the 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla, and sugar. Once this is combined through whisking to a smooth substance, add in the warm milk-cream and whisk until it is all blended.
- Pour this custard mixture over the pineapple wedges in the tart dish. Bake at 400 degrees f for 60 minutes, covering with aluminum foil after 30 minutes (when the top should be sufficiently cooked as to provide a somewhat solid surface). It should jiggle a bit but no longer be liquid at the end.
© 2018 Ryan Thomas