CC photo by Bastique courtesy of Flickr
Flan is a popular dessert dish that is easily found throughout Mexico, along with most of the world, but most commonly associated with Mexico and South American countries. The rich dish is made with simple ingredients readily available, but the technique is what makes many shy away. When it’s done well, though, it is truly a food of the gods.
CC photo by Waywuwei courtesy of Flickr
Above, a street vendor in Puerto Vallarta sells the egg custard as a profitable business.Â It is becoming a very popular dessert all around the world since flan takes different forms across many cultures. It is now found on the street, as above, but also in convenience stores and in powdered packets to make an instant flan. Tasty in a pinch, these reportedly lack the light and airiness of traditionally made flan.
CC photo by Toastforbrekkie courtesy of Flickr
The traditional caramel flan is the most popular flavor, but several up and coming favorites are closing in. Coconut flan offers a delicious alternative adding the familiar texture of coconut. Some other flavors include coffee, chocolate, strawberry, orange, lemon and almond. As shown above, the texture is smooth and airy. Usually syrups and extracts are used for flavoring to avoid changing the well loved smoothness of the custard. Coconut is the one addition that seems to be readily accepted though. Other fruits and flavorings are also added as a topping along with whipped cream.
CC photo by Hexodus… courtesy of Flickr
Milk is one of the ingredients that can change the flavor of the flan and can become quite debatable when locals discuss flan recipes. While some use cow’s milk, others swear by goat’s milk. Condensed milk and evaporated milk are often used, but some add coconut milk into the mix for both texture and flavor.
Flan is readily available, but there is something about enjoying this delightful dessert within the borders of Mexico that make the experience so magical. Whether purchased through a street vendor, a restaurant, or local, flan is too delicious to go without.