Maple-Almond Flan

I made a New Year’s resolution to diet and eat healthy, so I have taken up the South Beach Diet. I downloaded two books onto my Kindle for Mac, South Beach Diet for Beginners and South Beach Diet Supercharged. Phase One, which lasts two weeks, is very strict about carbs, sugar, and fat. But it’s not all serious. I find the recipes fun to make and delicious too. Desserts are allowed in Phase One so that no one should feel deprived. Instead of going through the menu, I’ll just skip ahead to the dessert!

This flan recipe comes from the Supercharged book. It needs a water bath (bain marie) to set the custard. However, there were some problems with this recipe.  It did not state the oven temperature needed to set the custard. I guessed a moderate oven, 350˚F, would do. I also found that the custard set in 50 minutes rather than in 25 minutes at ? temperature. Perhaps it’s because I didn’t have a roasting pan big enough to give the custard room to set. Instead, I used a 9 inch square glass baking dish. Though it took a while, the result is delicious and well worth it!

Ingredients for the flan:
1 tin (12 oz) fat free evaporated milk
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons nonfat milk
1/2 cup egg substitute (2 large eggs)
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar substitute

Ingredients for flan topping:
3 tablespoons slivered almonds, toasted (I used sliced almonds–it’s a preference!)
4 tablespoons sugar free maple syrup

Prepare the ingredients. Preheat oven to 350˚F. In a saucepan, combine evaporated milk and nonfat milk. In a small bowl, combine egg, vanilla, almond extract, and sugar substitute. Add to milk mixture. Heat until the milk is scalded; that is, little bubbles form around the edges of the pan. Do not boil. Ladle the milk-egg mixture into 4 ramekins. My teeny tiny kitchen didn’t have ramekins so I used ceramic coffee cups.

Bake the flan. Place ramekins (or coffee cups)  in a roasting pan and fill with hot water until the level of water comes half-way up the sides of the ramekins. Bake in the preheated oven 50 minutes or until the tops turn golden brown. Remove from the water bath and cool slightly. Refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight.

Serve. Toast the slivered/slice almonds in an ungreased skillet. You can also do it in a slow (275˚F) oven. To serve, drizzle a tablespoon of the maple syrup over the top of the flan then sprinkle the almonds on top. It’s so-oo good! You don’t feel you are on a diet.

Cake Baker’s Note: I used whole eggs to make this dessert, otherwise the calories per serving would have been 108.

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