Tuesday, March 10, 2009

TWD: Lemon Cup Custard - and - Caramel-Topped Flan


I did something new yesterday. I finally sat down and counted the recipes in Dorie Greenspan's book, "Baking: From my Home to Yours". It's surprising I haven't done this yet, since I'm a sorter and organizer and counter of things.

Maybe I hadn't done it because if I knew how many recipes there were, I wouldn't have joined the Tuesday's with Dorie group. It's a daunting task, baking your way through an entire cookbook. Baking Every. Single. Recipe.

Now that I'm forty recipes in, I guess it's safe to say I'm committed to the effort.


By my count, there are 208 recipes, not including variations. I think I missed a few, but still, we're talking roughly 4 years to get through the cookbook (at one recipe per week). OK, so we'll be done at the end of 2011! Wow.

I wonder how many folks will be left standing at the end. How many people will be able to say "I baked EVERY recipe from that book", or even "I baked almost every recipe from that book".

I hope to be one of them. But to do that, not only do I have to stay the course, but I also have to make up the recipes done before I started the group last May.


That's why you're seeing a custardy friend hanging out with my Lemon Cup Custard, this week's recipe, chosen by Bridget of The Way the Cookie Crumbles. Readers, meet Caramel-Topped Flan.



I was glad for the opportunity to compare and contrast the two different types of custard. Although the base was similar, the flavoring was quite different. For the lemon version, the lemon zest was to be steeped in the hot milk. With the flan, sugar was cooked to an amber hue and placed in the baking dish ahead of the custard.

The verdict? I thought the lemon custard was quite tasty. However, I thought the flan was fantastic. (My neighbor thought the lemon custard was the better of the two.) One qualifier... you have to like custard (i.e. "eggy") to enjoy these desserts. (I do, my husband doesn't. ) I would definitely make either of these again.

Baking Notes:

I baked the flan according to the directions in the book. I baked the lemon custard slightly different, based on comments from the TWD bakers that tried it ahead of me. Most commented that it was very eggy and bland. I substituted half of the milk with cream to make it more creamy. I used twice the lemon zest called for, I gave it a squeeze of fresh lemon, and I added a little lemon extract. This made for a lightly lemon flavored dessert. I also took it out of the oven right at 40 minutes, while it was still noticeably jiggly, so as not to over cook.



For the Lemon Custard recipe, please refer to Dorie's book, or Bridget's site, above. For the Flan recipe, please refer to Stephanie's site at Whisk: A Food Blog (Steph chose this recipe back in March, 2008).

OK, two more recipes down, only (about) 140 more!

36 comments:

pinkstripes said...

Both desserts look great. The caramel-topped flan is the next past recipe on my list to catch up on. I'm glad you liked it, I can't wait to make it. I love flan.

Elyse said...

Two desserts for the price of one? How great! Both of these look fabulous. I'm a huge fan of custard. When I studied in London, we used to buy tubs of custard. It was fabulous. I especially love baked custards, and both of your variations look great!

Tracey said...

They both look wonderful! I also need to go back and make some of the recipes I missed. Nice work on making two this week!

Megan said...

Ugh - now my OCD tells me I should go and count the recipes I've made. Oh great - now I won't be able to sleep tonight.

I loved the flan - but the custard was just ok.

Marthe said...

Both desserts look gorgeous, although I think I prefer the flan.... ;) Great work!

chocolatechic said...

Wow! I didn't realize that there were so many recipes in the book.

I will have made almost all the recipes. I didn't join till July of last year.


It looks fabulous.

Steph said...

I'm a counter, organizer type person too. I just checked the site..50 or so weeks until I get to pick. I can't wait. I'm glad you enjoyed this, it makes me want to give it a try even though most people thought it was to eggy

Maria said...

You are well on your way! Can't wait to see the other 140 recipes!

Pamela said...

I hope I'm standing at the end, too. My DH likes flan and eggy desserts, and I am not really that big on them. I would definitely try some of that flan though, just for the caramel! Great job.

Beryl said...

You've inspired me to go back and make all the recipes I've missed- especially the flan cuz it looks yummy!

Amy said...

Wow - nice job making two custards this week! I *love* Dorie's flan...its one of my favorites! They both look great - especially the lemon custard, it looks so creamy!

-Amy
www.singforyoursupperblog.com

Jayne said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jayne said...

Oops - sorry about that - I deleted my comment because I'd signed in with the wrong account.

As I meant to say - I love that you made both the flan and the custard this week - great idea to compare and contrast the two, and I wish I'd thought of doing it because I haven't made the flan yet either. Great job on both!

Matt's Kitchen said...

I am a card carrying custard member. Both of your creations look wonderful, but what I'm really wondering is what happens when we bake our way to the end of the book? Start over? Choose another Dorie book?

SiHaN said...

haha. You're insane in going about that mission! but don't worry.. i'm behind you all the way. and i might say, the caramel topped flan looks gorgeous. well done...

Amanda said...

You are so good to do two, because I think they make the perfect back-off. I now want to try flan, having never done it before. I too was wondering the other day how many recipes are there... I only joined last Nov! I will be baking for a LONG time. Your flan looks fantastic!

mike said...

Wow. that looks fantastic. BOTH of them! I loved the custard - it was a mix between creamy and "curdy"... if that's a word. Love the photography - you really captured the essence of the dessert!

Cathy said...

Great post! It is so helpful to hear your thoughts on how the custard and the flan compare. I didn't love this, but I had fun trying. I think I might love yours, though!

Teanna said...

WOW 2011!!! I can't even believe that! We've got two more years! That's a lot of butter!

Ivette said...

Your dessert looks great and I enjoyed looking at your pics. I made a cinnamon-vanilla custard and thought it was simple and had a good taste :)

Leslie said...

What a great idea to go back and make the recipes we missed! I have a lot to catch up on since my first recipe was the caramel peanut topped brownie cake in October.

TeaLady said...

WOW!! I have thought about counting, but was too chicken. I am two years down the road, depending how many we lose between now and then. ANd I have some catching up to do, too.

Anyway. Both of yours look great. I so want to try flan.

Jill said...

They both look great! Thank you for counting the recipes so I don't have to!

Bunny said...

I love custardy desserts, my hubby doesn't. I've never had flan before, I really want to try it. 2011! WOW, when you put it like that it is a long term commitment isn't it!

vibi said...

Yessss... people with taste, do like egg custard! I knew you were one of those!!!

Very nicely done, Jacque... enjoyed the tast test!!! LOL

Shari@Whisk: a food blog said...

Interesting that you did the caramel flan and this one together. I know I'd prefer the caramel one, but what about some caramel on the lemon? Does that sound strange?

I've been wanting to count the recipes too, so thanks for saving me the effort! 208. wow. now i need to know what percentage we're complete...

Carol Peterman said...

You know, I try not to think of how big a commitment it is to make everything in the book and just plug away one week at a time. I have had the desire to go back and mark all the recipes I missed before joining last April so I can start catching up. Clever idea to make the flan with the custard, they both look great.

Natashya said...

I have been thinking about pairing my TWDs with rewinds that I missed too. I guess I joined around the same time as you? I started with the strawberry tart, I think.

Natashya said...

I really liked the lemon custard too, but your flan looks amazing!

Grace said...

flan. it's just fun to say. :) nicely done, jacque--you always impress me.

Ash said...

mmm... flan! Yours turned out superb!

Jules Someone said...

Those both look just delicious! Nice work.

Andrea said...

Great thinking to pair these two desserts. I have the flan on my make-up list as well (even though I'm not a fan I'm hoping my family will like it)

I love your TWD timeline! I hope to be one still standing at the end and be able to say I made every single recipe :)

AmyRuth said...

Jacque, you are such an organizer! It never occurred to me to "comparison bake." Impressive! Very interesting stats too. It will be interesting to see who is left standing. It is a fun endeavor and I hope we can keep it that way. Love your lemon cups and flan. Double the Fun. Great work.
AmyRuth

farah said...

Oh both of these look delicious! Well done for doing both, what a great way to compare. I really liked the custard, glad you did too :)

Dazy said...

I've always wanted to make flan. But the whole caramel making process gives me the creeps! I tried once,
and it failed. May be I should give it a try once again bcoz this looks amazing!