Monday, October 3, 2011

Low-Fat Ginger Pumpkin Flan

Low-Fat Ginger Pumpkin Flan

I know, I're all expecting a Movie Mania Monday post, but today I'm REALLY proud of myself.  I've conquered my cooking nemesis and I just couldn't wait to share it with you!

After last year's epic fail at pumpkin flan, you and I agreed that I wouldn't try this again.  But, those of you who know me, know that I don't give up that easily.  The sound of pumpkin flan just sounds too good to me.  I can't just let it go.

2010's epic fail
at Pumpkin Flan

I did some more research this year, and I found a REALLY delicious and LOW-FAT recipe from The Daily Green that I couldn't wait to try! I altered it just a tiny bit, but FINALLY!  A recipe that WORKS!

The key to making a good flan takes patience...lots of it.  You can't make this work if your plans are to eat it right out of the oven, which is what I wanted to do last year.  You've got to take it out of the oven when it's still a little jiggly, like you would with a cheesecake, and allow it to set in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours.  I also tried to eliminate the water bath step last year, thinking that it was tedious and unnecessary.  It's MANDATORY for even cooking.  
If you like flan, and you LOVE pumpkin the way I do (get ready for LOTS more pumpkin recipes this week), you will absolutely LOVE this recipe.

Low-Fat Ginger Pumpkin Flan
Prep Time: 30 minutes (Plus 2 hours 30 minutes cooling time) / Cook Time: 45 minutes / Servings: 6 
Low-Fat Ginger Pumpkin Flan
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup water
  • 2 large eggs
  • 4 large egg whites
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup organic pumpkin puree, unseasoned
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated fresh ginger root
  • 1/2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup low-fat milk
  • 3/4 cup evaporated skim milk 
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Heat a large pot of water on medium heat.  When the water comes to a boil, lower heat to low and keep the water warm.
  3. In a small saucepan, combine 3/4 cup sugar with 1/3 cup water. Bring to a simmer over low heat, stirring occasionally until sugar melts. Increase heat to medium-high and cook, without stirring, until caramel turns amber, 5 to 7 minutes. (Keep an eye on it so that it does not burn.) Working quickly (caramel will harden quickly) carefully pour about 2 tsp. caramel each into 3/4 cup ramekins and tilt to coat insides evenly. Set aside.
  4. In a mixing bowl, combine eggs, egg whites and 1/3 cup sugar. Stir on low speed with electric mixer until smooth. Add pumpkin puree, ginger, pumpkin pie spice and vanilla. Stir again on low speed until smooth.
  5. In a small saucepan, combine milk and evaporated milk.  Heat on medium heat until hot, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to low and keep milk warm.
  6. Slowly temper the warm milk mixture into the pumpkin mixture, whisking continuously. Pour custard mixture into prepared ramekins until they're about 3/4 full.
  7. Place a folded kitchen towel into the bottom of a roasting pan. Place ramekins on towel. Add enough of the heated water to the pan to come halfway up the outsides of the ramekins.
  8. Bake flans for40-45 minutes, until the flan is just set. Remove ramekins from water and let cool on wire rack, about 30 minutes. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours. (The flans will keep, if covered, in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.)
  9. To serve, run a knife around the edge of each flan, place a serving dish upside-down on top of the ramekin, flip over and allow the flan to fall onto the serving dish. 
Low-Fat Ginger Pumpkin Flan