How To Make The Best Leche Flan

Every delicious dish deserves a delicious dessert that will end the table gathering with a bomb. Thus, you are fortunate to have landed on this content because this will teach you how to make Filipino Leche Flan. If you have a sweet tooth, then, this is definitely for you. 

Just recently, I have been visited by my korean friends. I offered them Filipino dishes and desserts. Surprisingly, Leche Flan, which I thought they wouldn’t like because it was too sweet, was among their favorites along with other main dishes, like Chicken Adobo at Sisig. 

A lot of people love it, but to tell you honestly, very few attempt to make it. Why? Because the process is a little complicated. I was too hesitant at first to even  have a glimpse on its recipe. Luckily, my sister was there to teach me. Thus, today, I will share it with you.

leche flan on a plate
(Photo Credits to: Ang Sarap)

What Is Filipino Leche Flan?

Leche flan is a steamed custard made with eggs and milk topped with a sweet syrupy caramel made with sugar, and flavoured with vanilla.  Flans are of Roman origin, but Leche Flan originated along the border of France and Spain, and it was the Spaniard that bought it to the Philippines during their colonization, and until now, it is still one of the notable influences of them.

Leche means milk and Flan crème caramel. The name already suggests that it’s a sweet dessert with milk. It is somehow similar to Crème brûlée, which is also custard topped topped with a layer of caramelized sugar. Flan is steamed while the Crème brûlée is baked although there are some the also have the Leche Flan baked, but it is a very rare case. 

Leche Flan has a bit jigglier texture while Crème brûlée is pudding-like and has a crisp caramelize layer. Also, the latter is creamier than the former.  

Nowadays, Leche flan is a favorite dessert served in birthday parties or any special celebrations. Actually,  Christmas is coming, and so is the season for Leche Flan. In the Philippines, it’s one of the common items you see in public markets, sold in a very affordable price, so even  less fortunate can afford it. After all, it’s the season of giving. 


How Long Does it take to Make Leche Flan?

Leche flan is a little deceiving in terms of the cooking time. If you notice, it requires a few ingredients: evaporated and condensed milk, egg yolk, brown sugar ( and wine: optional), but it takes an hour or more to make it. The preparation time requires 10 minutes, and the actual making; mixing, baking or steaming, requires 50 minutes to 1 hour. Thus, it takes 60 minutes to 1 hour and 15 minutes to finally be able to taste this well loved dessert. 

leche flan ingredients
Photo Credits to: Caminoescolar

Egg Yolk, the Most Beneficial Among the Leche Flan Ingredients 

Although it’s sweet that it should not be consumed always, it still has benefits, especially the egg yolk. Thus, let’s focus on Egg Yolk Benefits. Read on!

Egg Yolk

  1. Egg Yolks have vitamins and minerals: Vitamin A, Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Thiamin (Vitamin B1), Riboflavin (Vitamin B2) , Vitamin B6, Folate (Vitamin B9), Vitamin B12, Choline, Calcium, Iron, Phosphorus, Zinc and Selenium.
  2. It is the yellow part and the portion of the egg that bears nutrients.
  3. It has proteins, like phosvitin that may prevent inflammation.
  4. The yolk also can protect the body against diseases and infections through stimulating the production of macrophages with the help of compounds called sulfated glycopeptides which egg yolk membrane has.
  5. It also helps in lowering the blood pressure with the help of peptides found in the egg yolk.
  6. It has carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin, which may prevent our eyes from developing various eye problems, like cataracts.

Leche Flan Molder

Leche flan is not just known for its sweet taste but also for its shape. In the Philippine, Leche Flan is oval. Why and how? It is possible with the help of the Leche Flan molder, a small baking pan which is oval in shape too. The molder is called Llanera by Filipinos. The size of the molder where the leche flan mixture will be put in is just enough to satisfy 2-3 persons craving unless you really have a sweet tooth. 

steps on cooking leche flan
Credits to: Hi Cookery

How to Caramelize Sugar for Leche Flan

Caramelizing sugar is not just for leche flan, but to answer your question, you can caramelize the sugar by heating on low heat until it changes in color, taste, and composition. The caramel, is then the by-product that can be used in confections, such as yema and leche flan.


When It Is Not the Leche Flan That You Have Expected

Sometimes, even desserts have some off taste and flavor. Thus, solve it right away. Below are some samples of taste issues of Flan and tips on how you can solve them. 

Not Sweet Enough

Yes, I tried many flans in the past that were not sweet enough or at least didn’t have the amount of sweetness I expected from a naturally sweet dessert, like this. If this happens to your plan, the best solution is to make a separate caramel syrup, and pour it into your already made flan. 

Too Sweet

Yes, it is naturally and basically sweet, but there are some people that can’t stand having at least 3 spoons of it, so to be able to able to finish one llanera of Leche flan, add sour flavor to it. You can squeeze lemon into your it. Also, you can remove some syrup from the llanera to at least lessen the sweetness. Tip: if you want to avoid too much sweetness, you can add lemon in the middle of the making process.


How to Make Leche Flan Using Oven

As what’s been said above, Leche Flan is steamed. However, others opt for the other way, which is by baking it. Just do the same procedure until the pouring of mixture to the leche flan molder, then put a short wire rack into the roasting tray. then , put the molder with the mixture over the wire rack. Make sure it’s covered with foil. Into the roasting tray, pour boiling water. Finally, bake the leche flan for 50 minutes. 

caramelized sugar in llaneras
(Photo Credits to: Tagalog Lang)

How to Make Leche Flan Smooth

  1. Stir the evaporated milk and condensed milk together gently.
  2. Crack eggs when it’s time to mix them in. Egg yolks tend to dry out and be lumpy if they are left unattended and used for a few minutes after cracking them.
  3.  Add the custard mixture using a strainer to avoid splashes and to avoid forming bubbles.
  4. Use foil to cover your molder with flan mixture, and place them in a roasting pan. Pour water into the pan until it reaches half the height of the flan molder, then bake for 45 minutes. 
leche flan inside the oven
(Photo Credits to: SariSariFood)

List of Possible Partners for Your Leche Flan

Almost all viands

From fried to soup base viands, almost all go well with this dessert. After fishy aftertaste of your fried milkfish or after consuming too much soup from your Pork Sinigang, it’s always good to have a sweet dessert that will lessen your squeasy feeling because of too much food intake. 

Lemon or citrus fruits

If you are having Leche flan not as a dessert, maybe because you just want to enjoy it, better have lemon or any citrus fruits. After consuming one llanera of your flan, having one lemon or at least half of it, will round out sweet flavors.


Variation

The variation of a recipe provides you an excellent option to choose from. This variety can allow you to select the variant that suits you better. This variation can also be your option based on what appliances are available to use in your kitchen. It includes the following;

Baked Leche Flan Recipes

Some individuals are into baking rather than steaming; that is why this version exists. It is more sensitive than the traditional one because you are cooking this mixture in your oven. Setting the right temperature is also an essential part of preparing this delightful dessert. Too much heat can affect the entire mix, so on lower temperature also. That is why you need to set the right and ideal warmth in your oven.

In preparing this method, you need a container that you can use in your oven. You can include Llanera and a baking pan in those options. On the other hand, using this method can also produce the dryness of this output. That is why you need water to counter that. In a tray, put the baking pan with the custard mixture and cover it with foil. Before you enter it in your oven, put some hot water at the bottom of the baking pan, in the tray particularly.

Moreover, that process can moisturize your menu gratefully. The evaporated water can give significant moisture that can make your custard smooth and moist. Before that, ensure that you make the caramel at the bottom of your baking pan to make it more flavorful and sweet. Don’t worry about the caramel. It doesn’t burn if you set the right temperature in your oven. Plus, the water also has excellent participation in that matter.

You can set your oven for 40 to 55 mins to cook it thoroughly. Make sure that you check the water inside to avoid it from drying. To check if it’s already good, poke a knife in the center, and if it turns out clean, your dessert is ready to go. Cool it down for a minute to separate it from the container. Because if it is hot, it might stick to your baking pan. Refrigerate; it also works well to set your custard beautifully.

Steamed Leche Flan

This method is the traditional way of cooking the custard for the Filipinos. Steaming is their typical procedure to make their Leche Flan smoother and moist at the same time. The steam inside the cooker is an excellent compound that can provide significant moisture to prevent your mixture from being dry. 

Moreover, 45 minutes to 1 hour is the setting time to perform this preparation. Even though it has a lot of steam inside, you need to cover it to avoid moisture inside your mixture. Believe us. Your mix can become terrible if you don’t cover it completely. It is like soup after you do that. Without the cover, your container can collect all the water that vaporizes while cooking it. 

In covering your menu, you can use foil or plastic. In that case, you can block all the water that tends to go inside your course. Tie it with the rubber band to hold it properly. Besides, when placing it in your steamer. Ensure that you make a room between each of the containers to circulate the steam inside your steamer. That way, you can balance the temperature correctly. 

Furthermore, don’t overload the steamer to prevent them from overflowing. Use a clean cloth to cover it before you put the steamer’s cover. This process can provide a fantastic outcome for your preparation. Using clean cloth can block the steam from escaping. In that case, it can maintain the temperature inside your steamer. 

caramelizing sugar in a llanera
(Photo Credits to: Today’s Delight)

Troubleshooting

Some instances can occur during the preparation of your dishes. That is why you need a quick solution to have. This section contains some remedies that we assure you that helps a lot. This troubleshooting can serve as your guidelines to make your recipes properly. It includes the following;

Too bland mixture

Bland taste is the easiest to deal with, among other trouble in the kitchen. It may occur when you mismeasure your ingredients, especially the sugar content. To make it sweeter and give a nice kick, you can add an extra caramel and grated nutmeg. These two-ingredients can provide an outstanding outcome. That is why using it as an option is an excellent option.

Bitter caramel

If you are familiar with making caramel in the Llanera, you can make it separately in a pan. Just mix the sugar and the right amount of water to dissolve it and wait until it turns into shiny golden brown. Then after that, right away, put it in your molder to prevent it from cooling down. As you know, it can become solid when it cools down completely.

Cakey texture

As a beginner, many of you can relate to this thing. This problem occurs when you put so much yolk with whites. In the first place, we say that this dessert is a sensitive mixture. That is why you need to follow and measure the right amount of ingredients that you need. 

Furthermore, in preparing this mix, ensure that you separate the yolk properly and don’t use the whites to achieve your custard’s smooth texture. Thus, you can also use the whites in making other courses like bread and pudding. That is why don’t worry about the white. The most essential is the yolk that you need to use in making this delightful custard.

Too soft

Softness in this mixture is vital to impress the people who see this. But if it’s way too soft, it can affect the overall appearance of your custard structure. This trouble occurs when you put so much milk in your mixture. It can lessen the solidity of your custard if it’s way too much. 

That is why you need to get the right measurement beforehand. Ensure that the liquid ingredient is enough with the number of yolks that you will use. If you accidentally put so much of it in, you can adjust the number of yolks. That way, you can balance your mixture equally.


Trivia

Did you know that aside from having a flavorful and tasty custard, you can get nutrients out of it? Yes, that is right. You can get benefits out of having each of the ingredients that your custard has. This section contains the list of ingredients you need to consider as a healthy compound in your meals. It includes the following;

  • Egg 

It is one of the ingredients that have a lot of function in making numerous dishes. It has a unique taste that can complement most other compounds, so it is an excellent food to consider. Still, it also can provide various benefits that you are not expecting. 

Moreover, this ingredient has only 75 calories, yet, it contains a high-quality protein, 5 grams of fats, and 1.6 grams of saturated fat, along with vitamins, minerals, iron, and carotenoids. You can also consider it as the powerhouse of disease-fighting nutrients like lutein and zeaxanthin. 

Carotenoids may reduce the risk of age-related macular degeneration, which causes blindness in older adults. Besides, the choline content of the egg can also help to enhance your brain development and memory. Hence, you can only realize its full benefits if you store them properly in the refrigerator and cook them thoroughly to kill the potential bacterias. 

Furthermore, did you know that this food is not all equal? Some manufacturers and chicken farmers take action to make their egg production more nutritional and beneficial. They enhance each of them to create dietary properties to include them for nutritious menus and improve their nutritional qualities.

In a single large boiled egg, you can get the following;

  • Vitamin A: 6% of the RDA
  • Folate: 5% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B5: 7% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B12: 9% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B2: 15% of the RDA
  • Phosphorus: 9% of the RDA
  • Selenium: 22% of the RDA

It also has Omega-3 fats and much higher in vitamin A and E. Hence, it also has various benefits that you can get. It includes the following;

  • It has high cholesterol but doesn’t affect the blood cholesterol of your body.
  • Raise HDL cholesterol
  • Contains choline
  • May reduce the risk of heart disease.
  • It contains antioxidants that may have significant benefits in eye health.
  • The pastured egg can lower triglycerides.
  • It contains the right ratio of essential amino acids.
  • May reduce the risk of stroke.
  • Can help to lose weight
  • Milk 

It is an excellent ingredient that you can use to make your food creamier and flavorful. Yet, it also contains a lot of nutrients that can help you to achieve a healthy body. Evaporated cream is unsweetened condensed cream, which is a form of concentrated cream. It is a canned ingredient that has 60% of removed water from regular cream.

Moreover, Codex Alimentarius regulates nutritional composition internationally. Thus, the United States holds by the Code of Federal Regulations or CFR. And per them, the evaporated cream should contain a minimum of 6.5% of cream fat, 16.5% of cream solid-not-fat (MSNF), and 23% of cream solids. Yet, you can produce it from whole, reduced-fat, and fat-free cream.

On the other hand, there is some variation that can be a fair comparison. It includes the table below.

Variation of Evaporated CreamCaloriesCarbsProteinFatSugar
Whole Evaporated 33825 grams17 grams19 grams25 grams
Reduced-Fat Evaporated 23228 grams19 grams5 grams28 grams
Fat-Free Evaporated19728grams19 grams0.5 grams28grams
Whole Cow’s 14912 grams8 grams8 grams12 grams

In this table, you can see that all three types of evaporated cream have a high amount of nutrients concentration rather than the Whole Cow’s Milk. Generally, they contain over twice as many grams of carbs, calories, and fats. The fat-free evaporated cream and Fat-free evaporated milk have low-fat content counts but have various minerals nutrients.

Furthermore, all these three evaporated milk includes the following;

  • Calcium: 50% of the Daily Values (DV)
  • Magnesium: 15% of the Daily Values (DV)
  • Zinc: 18% of the Daily Values (DV)

Fresh milk contains;

  • Calcium: 21% of the Daily Values (DV)
  • Magnesium: 6% of the Daily Values (DV)
  • Zinc: 8% of the Daily Values (DV)

On the contrary, if you wish to compare the evaporated milk to the sweetened one. It might be different. 

A can of condensed milk of 30ml, you can get the following;

  • Calories: 122
  • Protein: 3 grams
  • Sugar: 3 grams
  • Fat: 20 grams

Tips

This section is all about the tips that you need to know to make your recipes more delightful. We provide some details that may guide you to achieve your ideal course. You can consider it as your advancement in creating this masterpiece. It includes the following;

  • Ensure that you separate the yolk properly. Don’t ever add the whites if you want to achieve the perfect texture of this custard mix.
  • If you want to prevent your caramel from burning, it is better to cook it in a separate pan. But make sure that you transfer it right after in each container because it is easy to cool down and solidify completely. 
  • Using measuring cups works well also. 
  • Use fresh ingredients in making this delightful dessert. 
  • You can also use vanilla extract if you don’t have the actual vanilla seeds. 
  • If your mixture is too pale, you can use food coloring that has a yellow color shade.
  • Check your molder if it has holes to avoid it from leaking.
  • When you put the plastic in your molds, make sure that you remove the air inside it. Tie it properly to prevent it from overflowing.
  • Don’t over blend your custard mixture because it can produce bubbles that can affect your recipe’s appearance.
  • Once you put it in the fire, don’t ever open the lead to maintain the perfect temperature of it inside. Not until the timer ends.
  • Use lime to give some extra flavor.

Excellent Served With

This section contains the list of the different courses that have unique chemistry to our star dish. Each of them has its flavor that can complement these Leche Flan recipes. In this list, we include the following;

Halo-halo

It is an excellent partner when the summer comes. It contains a lot of sweetness that can ease your cravings. Each of its ingredients has a unique taste that can complement each other in excellent ways. For that reason, no wonder that Leche Flan also has a perfect flavor that can provide a savory taste to this Halo-halo dessert.

Moreover, many Filipinos use this Leche Flan as the toppings of this dessert. Together with Ube Halaya, they can give a stunning impression. They also provide a tasty flavor that is hard to resist. That is why it is a good option after your meals.

Bread

It is a direct wheat product with a specific taste that can complement sweets and other numerous bites. The custard’s sweetness can add flavor to it and give a new dimension to an excellent combo. That is why trying it can provide an outstanding result.

Suman

It has a specific taste with a unique flavor of the banana leaves that matches our custard recipe. These two create an outstanding taste that everyone can enjoy, even if you are a person with no interest in sweets because Suman can lessen the sweet of it and absorb the extra sweetness of your custard. 

Suman is one of the Filipinos’ favorite Kakanin. Aside from Biko, Bibingka, and Butchi. It also uses sticky rice as its primary ingredient. It is also present on many Filipinos occasions. That is why we assure you that this meal can provide an excellent savory taste.


Conclusion

Above all, this information is how you can achieve the custardLeche Flan recipe you are longing for. That is why we provide each section that contains different concerns about cooking this delightful recipe. We hope that we provide all the ideas that you need to create this course. We also include some adjustments to help you when you come across some instances while making it.

Furthermore, we listed the troubleshooting that you can perform to make your preparation more stable. You can look at the trivia we provide if you are curious about the other side of this course. For the advanced data, take a glance also at the tips that we make. It may guide you to improve the procedure that you need to perform in this kind of recipe.

So, without any hesitations, grab the ingredients you need and make your version of this beautiful dessert. Share the sweetness that this food contains. Enjoy it with your loved ones. Enjoy eating!

For more delicious recipe, visit Eat Like Pinoy!

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5 from 2 votes

Superb Leche Flan Dessert

In this section, it contains how you can prepare and perform this Leche Flan course. We include the ingredients and instructions that you need to follow to create your version of this recipe.
Course Dessert
Cuisine Filipino
Keyword Dessert recipes
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 1 hour 20 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 30 minutes
Servings 4 people
Calories 550kcal
Cost $5-$20

Equipment

  • Llanera
  • steamer

Ingredients

  • 1 can Evaporated Milk
  • 1 can Condensed Milk
  • 1/2 cup Brown Sugar
  • 1 pitcher Water
  • 10 pcs fresh yolks
  • 1 tsp Lime
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Instructions

  • Get all the eggs, separate the yolk from the egg white.
    Note: only egg yolks will be used.
  • In a large bowl, put the egg yolks and beat using a fork or egg beater.
  • Add the condensed and evaporated milk. Mix well. Then add the lime.
  • Put the molder (llanera) on top of the stove and heat over low fire.
  • Put-in the brown sugar on the molder and mix thoroughly until the sugar dissolves and caramelized.
  • Spread the caramel evenly on the flat side of the molder. Wait for 5 minutes.
  • Then pour the mixture (egg yolk and milk) on the molder.
  • Cover the top of each molder with aluminum foil and steam for 30 to 35 minutes.
  • After steaming, let it cool down then refrigerate.
  • Serve for dessert. Share and Enjoy!

Nutrition

Calories: 550kcal | Carbohydrates: 90g | Protein: 14g | Fat: 16g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Cholesterol: 86mg | Sodium: 228mg | Potassium: 672mg | Sugar: 89g | Vitamin A: 512IU | Vitamin C: 4mg | Calcium: 538mg | Iron: 1mg
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