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#FlanFridays: Mojito

MojitoFlanMain.14 #FlanFridays: Mojito

¡Hola! It’s Friday and another flan creation for you. This one, though I was completely against the flavor, was a special request by a young Latino doing some fun, cultural things in the East coast… a road trip of sorts. His last stop is D.C. and in talking about the day’s activities, we mentioned having flan and café together. He ever-so-slickly threw in there how much he’d love to try a mojito flan. Joy! I had every intention of making a watermelon one. It was a challenge I put myself up to and supported by some chef friends on Facebook.

No less, here we are with a mojito in solid form. The second most complicated one I’ve made to date. If you recall, the blueberry one, which I’ll reiterate, is insanely delicious and gritty, gave me a hard time. By contrast, this one was {relatively} easy, just very time consuming. Sure, I could have taken short cuts and saved myself some time by using extracts; but I wanted the real deal. It was pouring late last night and I seriously debated using a cocktail of extracts versus picking some leaves from the stash in our backyard. When the rain subsided, I ran outside, made a beeline for the patch and picked a few stems with flowers. I was determined to mirror a real mojito — no extract in that popular cóctel. None here either, friends.

I extracted mint flavor by boiling the fresh leaves in milk.

MojitoFlanFlower #FlanFridays: Mojito

As you can imagine, I then had to strain it and let it cool. Doesn’t seem so bad, right? Well, while mint has a strong effect, when boiled in milk, the flavor is somewhat diffused, requiring a long, simmering process to really get it all out. That’s even with a pre-boil muddle.

I could have also cheated with rum extract, but I used a generous amount of Havana Club dark rum to grab a strong liquor flavor since most of it was going to evaporate. Lastly, some citrus! A good amount of fresh squeezed lime and lemon juice and the custard was well on its way to cooking up and becoming minty and creamy goodness.

I woke this morning to a lovely full-sized flan which emitted really strong scents of mint and rum. I was actually a bit surprised. I thought the chilling process would have deflated the bold aromas it gave immediately after removing it from the pressure cooker. But it didn’t and my morning was off to a great start. All that was missing was some espresso.

I’m not sure why it took me a few years to make one to share with you, but better late than never, as they say, right? It’s all muy bueno and well worth the extra time spent baking.

One important note, though. I would not make this mojito one in the more traditional method of setting in a bain marie. Honies, you’d be in the cocina, sweating it off, for about 2+ hours. Yes, it’s great, but we have other things to tend to! Like making a liquid mojito!

MojitoFlan1 #FlanFridays: Mojito

Happy #FlanFridays, lovelies! Eat, love and pray.

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A P.S. on Photo Details: While I enjoy taking my pictures and sharing some good material, I’m just not pleased with these at all. I shot in partial natural night and the dining room (was still raining this morning) and had my settings to manual where I could manipulate the ISO, etc… yet still, the raw files look okay and the editing process kicked my butt. I spent too much time and just walked away. I’m a perfectionist, but not today. I have to just let it go. I think I still offer a picture that entices the palate!

MOJITO FLAN

Ingredients:

  • 3 whole eggs
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • 14 oz. milk (2% or whole)
  • 3/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint leaves, muddled
  • 10 mint leaves for garnish
  • juice from 1/2 lemon and 1/2 lime
  • 2 Tbsp. rum (dark or light)
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Method:

In small saucepan, add milk and 1/4 cup mint leave and bring to boil. Reduce heat to low, cover and let simmer for 30 minutes. Add rum and let sit for 5 more minutes. Strain milk and transfer to bowl. Chill for 30 minutes.Whisk eggs in a medium sized bowl. Add and combine sweetened condensed & whole milk, lemon and lime juice and vanilla extract.  Set aside. Add sugar to an 8"  flan mold and caramelize on medium-high heat until it is golden color, stirring constantly. Make sure not to burn sugar.  When sugar is fully melted down, carefully  coat entire flan mold, covering all sides, using  circular motion (I suggest using a brush if you are not experienced in handling extremely hot caramel). Move fast if using a brush. Close flan mold.

Add 3 cups of water to a 4 or 6 qt. pressure cooker. Gently place flan mold in cooker and close lid. Place jiggler on lid. If your pressure cooker jiggler has different PSI settings, set it to 10. Cook on high for 10 minutes, or until pressure cooker starts hissing. Turn off heat and allow all of the pressure to release itself, or for another 5 minutes.

Remove from pressure cooker after all pressure is released. Refrigerate for 8-9 hours or overnight for best taste. Remove from refrigeration 30-45 minutes before serving to loosen some. To serve, using a butter knife, loosen the sides of the flan all the way around. Take a large plate, place upside down on top of flan and flip. Garnish each individual slice with 2-3 leaves of mint and flower sprigs.

Serves 8. 

* Chef's notes: you can add the rum to the finished flan instead of fusing it in with the milk. It will thin out your caramel, so you may make your caramel thicker by adding 1 additional tablespoon. Simply pour two tablespoons over the custard and let blend into caramel. Continue to cut individual slices. 

By Bren
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Comments

    Jenni says:

    Wow! You have taught me a new Thing. Flan in a pressure cooker?! Seems counterintuitive, esp w/alcohol’s low boiling point. I always baked flan w/alcohol in them in a very low oven w/bain marie to prevent curdling. But the pressure cooker method obviously works like a charm–what a smooth, beautiful texture! Magical!

    Rosa says:

    Terrific! I’m drooling….

    Cheers,

    Rosa

    chefb says:

    Jenni: You make a good point. I didn’t address the boiling point of alcohol only than to say that it evaporates once cooked, hence, only adding to the boiling milk toward the end. Alternatively, it can be reserved to be added to the complete custard mixture. And while it may seem counterintuitive, b/c pressure-cooking cuts cooking time down by 70%, there’s very little time for the alcohol to do anything. It settles in very nicely. If one wants, they can add the alcohol to the finished flan, which will seep into the caramel. I’ve done that with other flans like Frangelico and Grand Marnier! :) Glad you like it! I have to say it came out tasting just like amojito!

    Marcela says:

    Looks amazing!!!

    Jenni says:

    Thanks, Bren, for the exFlanation! ;) Makes perfect sense! Another reason to find a good pressure cooker!

    Eliana says:

    The flan queen strikes again. I think this may be my fav creation, which celebrates my fav cocktail. Cannot wait to make it out of my own kitchen. Gracias Bren :)

    Hefemeril says:

    Folks,

    Last night I was fortunate enough to be welcome in the Herrera mansion (one of several, she cant remember ;)

    And I have to tell ya…I saw her out picking the mint in her garden.

    That was truly eye opening in the heat of the Cuban experience.

    With a basket in hand, she waltzed by her party playing in “the game room” (yes she has a game room adjoining her garden). Out the side door, Chef B went, braving horrific rain and lightening –and frankly looking cuter than an Easter dress boutique. Bren moved fast to her herb garden, knowing exactly where to find that lovely mint. And to my surprise (though I shouldn’t have been), out of her perfect apron arose an amazing pair of brilliantly shiny kitchen scissors that looked straight out of some fairytale victorian kitchen. Perfect. Timeless. Damn I felt so salty.

    Scurrying back inside, looking luscious with a sprinkling of rain water over her doe eyes, she shook off her boots. With a wink that would make most men falter, she seemed to say ‘okay, watch me do my thang” …and with that our latina queen began to campaign in her kitchen.

    As I watched the inestimable Chef B work her mojito in the cocina, ducking and turning all the while to avoid interrupting her flantavulous momentum, I learned there are over 200 species of mint.

    Whisking and cracking, pouring and steaming, the progress unfolded, unsubdued by her otherwise long, busy day. Did I mention what all Ive seen her do? *shakes head in amazement*

    I occupied myself, somewhat sheepish and coy for I know little of this ” laboratorio in B major” by washing dishes. At least, I believed, I could help carry my weight until fed.

    And boy was I fed. For hours that day, she has been working on perfecting a tomato soup, complimented by a mouth watering enslavement of feta. (I believe it was feta) . Either way, who needs heaven when you can eat it.

    By the time it was all over, I had not gorged….I had been tempted with tomato, mint, heavenly cheeses and ginger wickedness few men are likely to dream.

    But it got me thinking, raising some intriguing questions:

    How minty is mint?

    And, after a shot of minty flan, can you kiss someone?

    Or should you use ginger spread to brush your teeth after?

    ….hmm….I smell a new flan coming. Ginger Swank!

    You go Chef B….

    kellypea says:

    I beg to disagree that your photos aren’t just perfect. Lovely, lovely color and soft light. And I’m all about the extra steps in something that is worth swooning over the first bite of once I’m finished preparing it. I’m relatively new to flan (insert gasp here) but am completely intrigued by this creation. You gotta love someone who will dash out into the rain for herbs :) I get it. :)

    Dullah says:

    I actually think you did a good job on the pics. A Mojito Flan sounds really good. Wish I was around to try it! I love your dedication to Flan Fridays, especially on such a difficult flavor to make. Great job!!

    Dali Rivera says:

    WOW!! I love this recipe and I had NO idea a pressure cooker could be used for flan. It sure is not the typical flan recipe my family has handed down. Thanks for sharing!

    chefb says:

    Marcela: thanks!

    Jenni: I hope you enjoy making it when you get to it. Glad I could help someone learn something new!

    Eliana: Yes! I’m so glad you like the series!

    Kelly Pea: Awww, you’re too kind, really. I had a tough time making them work. I knew they were going to have a soft tone to them, but for some reason I was fighting with them. As long as you and others like, I’m good. The flan was great! Oh my. I seldom eat flan even when I make it, but I had about 3 slices of this one!

    Dullah: Oooh! Nice to see you on here again! ;) Knowing you, you’d love this one.

    Dali: Gracias! Yes! I know you’re new to Flanboyant Eats, but you’ll hear me talk a lot about cooking with the pressure cooker. I’d love to work with other recipes as well, so if you have one to share, by all means, dale! ;)

    It is surprising that you haven’t done this flavor before. There are two really strong flavors to contend with–mint and rum–so it probably is time consuming to pull those out, yet making sure they do not overpower each other. It’s OK to have flan for breakfast right? This post makes folks hungry.

    Ericka says:

    Beautiful recipe! I want to take a big bite out of my monitor!

    Dave Patterson says:

    This recipe is perfecto for the summer! I will be making this ASAP….

    chefb says:

    The Duo Dishes: I know, right. I’ve made very similar flavors, but nothing to the T of this one. I loooooved it, I won’t lie. I’m a fan of all of my flans, but some stand out more than others. This was one of them. Flan for breakfast is just fine.

    Ericka: Thanks, dear. Do it!

    Dave: Sure.Is.

    betty says:

    amantes del flan eso esta delicioso .y lo digo por que ayer lo hice y fue un suceso para mis visitas .todos repitieron y no dejaron de comentar del sabor tan rico que tenia ,asi que intentenlo gracias chef otra vez fuiste la mejor

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