For as long as I can remember, my absolute favorite dessert has been FLAN. As I sit here listening to Celia Cruz singing “Quimbara” in my headphones and writing this, I swear I can almost taste the sweet creamy dessert just by thinking about it. I don’t remember the very first time I actually tried it, but I can tell you that it was love at first bite!!
If you don’t know what Flan is, let me happily explain! It is a traditional Latin American dessert made with sugar, eggs, sweet condensed and evaporated milk, and vanilla. It can be made in a variation of ways, which I’ll get into later but for now let’s just find out more about the history of flan.
Flan can actually be traced back to the Roman Empire!! The Romans were the first to domesticate chickens. When they found themselves with a surplus of eggs, they began creating new recipes. Flan was originally a savory dish made with herbs and spices however, later sweeter ingredients such as honey were added into the dish. One of the first recipes for flan can be found in recipe books dating back to the early 1300’s!
When the people of Spain were introduced to Flan, they were the first to incorporate the caramelized sugar. And of course when the Spanish started to explore the sea, they brought the sweet dessert along with them.
When the Mexicans got their hands on this sweet dessert, they began to introduce chocolate and coconut flavors into the flan. Then the recipes expanded into the Latin Americas.
Today the variety of flan recipes are endless. There are flavored flans like pumpkin, lime, and pineapple. There is also a denser version called Flan de Queso which is a cheesecake flan. And one of my favorite variations of flan… FLANCOCHO! A mixture of flan and cake that is just AMAZING. My good friend Tania, a fellow blogger and AMAZING photographer, posted a fantabulous recipe for flancocho on her blog. You can visit this mouth watering recipe on her blog here. Make sure to check out the rest of her page while you’re there as well!
If you haven’t tried flan, now is as great a time as any! I highly encourage it! Try it on the dessert menu at your local Mexican or Latin American restaurant, or make your own at home!! It’s very easy, and trust me you will not be disappointed!!
Make sure to check out my Pinterest to see my saved flan recipes!