Flan de rompope, spiked Mexican style eggnog! The holiday season is upon us and I have visions of sugared cranberries and spiked flan! Lol! Since I was little I have always loved the looks of the hollyberry with it’s green leaves. Reminds me so much of Christmas. I thought, keep it simple, but pretty. Years ago when I was working on developing recipes for Hispanic Kitchen site, I tested out many holiday recipes. Not all successful, but I learned a lot that is for sure! One of the simple tricks was how to prepare sugared cranberries to decorate your favorite desserts and cocktails. And it was because of that job that I challenged myself to learn how to prepare flan. After everything that has occurred in the past three years with covid and how it changed many of our lives, I see life differently. I am thankful to be sitting here typing these words to you and hopefully sharing a recipe the you will share with your loved ones this season or anytime. Enjoy!
Doesn’t Have To Be Fancy, But It Fun!
With just a few simple ingredients like fresh cranberries, mint leaves, sugar and water you can change a simple flan into a eye appealing delicious dessert. Make it special! Not a fan of adding rompope into your flan? That’s ok. You can add spiced eggnog with orange zest for holiday flavors. If you cannot find the rompope, you can use Rumchata or spiked eggnogg in this recipe.
Don’t Fuss! Don’t Stress!
Wonderful thing about flan is that it can be prepared ahead of time by a few days. You can store it chilled and uncovered for three days. Holidays can be stressful for many of us. We try to do too much in a short amount of time. The most important things are the time we share with our loved ones and the memories we make. Breaking bread together over conversation is wonderful. I miss those days with my siblings and parents. My dad would have loved this flan dessert! He loved all desserts actually. Sneaking in pies and ice cream when he thought we were already sleeping, lol! Miss my dad, miss my mom. They are always with me though. That’s why this whole blog started in the first place.
Rompope is an eggnog type of drink made with eggs, milk, vanilla and rum. That is the simple version. Some come flavored with cinnamon, nutmeg and clove. It’s delicious, not overly strong, when used in desserts that call for milk. This particular brand is available is some Mexican markets or in some liquor store. My friend Norma prepares Puerto Rican Coquito! Have you tried it? Delicious in flan!
Prep Ahead! You Will Thank Me Later!
As much as I cook and bake, I still make a habit of measuring out all of my ingredients, especially for baking. It just makes the whole cooking process go smoothly. And if you can cook with friends, even better. The meal or dessert may take three times longer, but most times enjoyable, lol! Cooking and baking is what saves me any time I feel stressed. I kid you not, preparing Mexican rice, the sounds and aromas is typically what I prepare on really stressful days. Then I get to eat it too!
Shake it! Shake It! Shake It!
When I was first learning to prepare flan, the caramel topping was the thing that stressed me out the most. Many times I let it go too long and it would taste burnt. But the most important thing is that I didn’t give up. Trial and error is how we learn.
Gently shake the skillet as the sugar melts and turns into a caramel sauce.
As soon as it looks smooth and flows easily, it’s ready!
Is there such a thing as too much caramel? Maybe not!
Flip It Hot? Flip It Cold?
I am no expert on preparing flan! Baked my first flan about ten years ago and it was always kind of intimidating! Lol! Mom’s desserts consisted of hojarascas(polvorones), empanadas de calabaza(pumpkin), dulce de nuez(pecan candies) and the best homemade cakes, but not flan. My dear friend Norma prepares the most beautiful flan I have ever seen. She is the one that instructed me on how to prepare the caramel topping. She decorates them so beautifully too! One thing I never thought to ask her is when is the best time to flip the flan onto the serving plate? Warm or cold? In the past, I have always chilled my flan before attempting to release it onto the serving plate. Didn’t always come out very easy. After a bit of waiting, shaking and tapping and gravity, it would release! Lol! Stresses me out, ha, ha, ha, ha!! Advice from a nice follower on Instagram was to flip the flan about 15-20 minutes after it comes out of the oven. Done! Be careful, the pan will still be hot.
Flan de Rompope
- Bundt Cake Pan
- large oven proof pan for water bath
- 2/3 cups sugar
- 7 medium eggs or 6 jumbo eggs at room temperature
- 1 can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 cup evaporated milk
- 1 1/2 cups spiked rompope or eggnog
- 2 tsps vanilla extract
- 1 tbsp cornstarch
- 1/2 c water
- 1 c granulated sugar
- 12 oz fresh cranberries
- 14-16 fresh mint leaves
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a tea kettle or pot heat 6 cups of water on low.
- In a small nonstick skillet, pour in 1/2 cup of the sugar. Reserve the remaining sugar for later. Heat to medium. Do not stir at all. After a while, the sugar will begin to melt. Turn and shake the skillet once in a while as it melts and becomes caramel. Have your cake pan nearby. As soon as the caramel is a golden brown color and loose, pour into the bottom of bundt pan and carefully swirl to coat and spread out caramel. Set aside.
- To the blender jar, add the eggs, sweetened condensed milk, evaporated milk, rompope, vanilla and cornstarch. Blend on high until very smooth. Pour into bundt pan.
- Place flan into larger, oven proof pan. The pan should cover the sides of the bundt pan almost to the top. Carefully pour in hot water to the larger pot, making sure you don't get any water in the flan batter. Cover flan with foil paper. Carefully transfer the flan in the water bath onto the middle rack in the preheated oven. Bake the flan for one hour. Check it after 45 minutes. Remove the foil and gently jiggle the pan. If the flan appears firm with a slight jiggle, it's ready. If it's too loose, continue baking for 10-15 more minutes.
- Once flan is fully cooked, remove it from the oven. Remove the foil paper. After 5 minutes, carefully remove it from the water bath. Let it sit for another 15 minutes. In all honesty, I have always chilled my flan before attempting to flip it over onto the serving plate. And doing so, the flan would sometimes not release that easily. I was advised to flip it as soon as I could(15-20 minutes) after it comes out of the oven.
- Gently loosen the edges of the flan from the pan using a butter knife. Using a large shallow plate with a rim, place it on top of the flan. Holding with both hands, one on top of bundt pan and the other holding the plate tight to pan, flip flan over onto the plate. Set onto table. It may not release right away. Gently tap the bottom and sides of the bundt pan to help it release. If it doesn't release after a while, you may have to let gravity take its course. Once the flan releases, chill it uncovered for a few hours before decorating.
Frosted Cranberries and decorating
- Two hours before you are ready to serve the flan, prepare the cranberries.
- In a sauce pan, add 1/2 c of water and half cup of sugar. Heat to medium. After a few minutes, stir to dissolve the sugar. Remove from the heat. Pour in the 12 oz. of fresh cranberries. Stir well to combine and coat evenly.
- Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Using a slotted spoon, remove the cranberries from the simple syrup, shaking off excess syrup. Spread out evenly onto lined baking sheet. Let cranberries dry for one hour.
- While the cranberries dry, tear off 14-16 mint leaves that are of equal size, more or less. Set aside.
- Once cranberries have dried for one hour, take 24 of them and dredge them in reserved 1/2 cup of sugar until evenly coated. Transfer them to a section of parchment or wax paper. let sit for a few minutes.
- Evenly space out 2 mint leaves(8 sections) slightly overlapping around the flan. I only added 14 all together, but would have liked 16, for 8 servings each having their cranberry decoration. Once you have the mint leaves in place. Gently place three frosted cranberries at the base of where the leaves overlap slightly. Push gently so they stick to the caramel and stay in place. Keep chilled until ready to serve. Store leftovers in the refrigerator.