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Pumpkin Flan

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Pumpkin is a very popular ingredient in cakes and pies, but not many people know how wonderful it tastes when added to a flan. In Brazil, pumpkin flan is just yet another variation of a classic dessert. I like to think that anything goes well when mixed with a classic flan recipe, so it could not be any different for this one. Creamy, sweet, with a hint of cinnamon, this Brazilian dessert is a must try for pumpkin lovers. Serve with freshly shaved coconut flakes on top, adding a twist on this delicious and unusual fall recipe. I hope you enjoy!

Serves 12

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 cups pumpkin pulp purée from a small sugar pumpkin or from canned pumpkin purée (see Cook’s Note)
  • 2 cans sweetened condensed milk (14 ounces each)
  • 3 eggs
  • Freshly shaved coconut, for serving (optional)

Directions for Caramel:

Pour sugar into a 10-inch bundt pan. Cook over medium heat, directly on the stove top, until the sugar melts completely and turns golden brown, 10 to 12 minutes. Swirl the pan allowing the caramel to completely cover the base and about 1 1/2-inch up the sides of pan. Set aside to cool and harden.

Directions for Flan:

In a medium sauce pan over medium-high heat, add milk and cinnamon stick and bring to a light boil. Turn heat down to medium-low and cook for 7 minutes. Turn heat off and remove cinnamon stick. Set aside to cool.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

In a blender, add pumpkin puree, sweet condensed milk, eggs, and milk. Blend until incorporated, 40 seconds. With a large spoon, remove foam that forms on surface. Tilt flan mixture onto bundt pan and cover with aluminium foil. Place bundt pan into a large ovenproof baking pan filled up with warm water up to about half way. Carefully transfer to oven. Bake for 50 to 70 minutes, or until a knife inserted in centre comes off clean.

Remove from oven and allow cooling completely. Refrigerate for 8 hours or overnight.

To unmold, gently run a small knife all around the bundt pan, then carefully flip it over a large plate. Slice and serve, topped with shaved coconut (optional).

Cook’s Note:

Making pumpkin purée from scratch is fairly simple! It also tastes better and it is better for you. So here is how: place a small sugar pumpkin on a cutting board. Cut off stem and scrape the insides; discard. Cut the pumpkin in half and lay cut side down on a rimmed baking sheet lined with aluminium foil. Bake at 350°F until fork tender, about an hour to an hour and a half. Remove from oven and allow cooling. Scoop out the pulp and smash it with a fork or use a food processor.

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