Pumpkin Flan

Pumpkin Flan

1 (16 ounce) can pumpkin purée
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
2/3 cup evaporated milk
2/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 large eggs
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 cup granulated sugar

Mix together pumpkin purée, cinnamon and cloves in a large mixing bowl. Pour in evaporated milk, condensed milk and vanilla extract; mix well. Next stir in the eggs, one at a time, and then the 1/4 cup sugar. Mix until all the ingredients are well blended.

Cook the 1 cup sugar in a small heavy saucepan or copper caramelizing pot over medium heat. Stir constantly until the sugar turns a honey color. As the sugar begins to dissolve, stir only occasionally. Once it dissolves, continue cooking without stirring until the caramelized sugar is deep amber in color. The color will change rapidly, so watch the saucepan carefully.

Immediately after you remove the caramelized sugar from the burner, pour it into six (6 ounce) individual custard cups or an 8-inch soufflé dish. Quickly tilt the cups or dish in various directions so that the caramelized sugar coats the bottom and sides.

Carefully pour the pumpkin mixture into the custard cups or soufflé dish, and then place them in a water bath, any shallow pan large enough to hold the custard cups or soufflé dish with room to spare and filled with 1 inch of hot water.

Bake the flan on the middle rack in a preheated 350 degrees F oven for 40 minutes for the custard cups and 1 hour and 20 minutes for the soufflé dish, or until a knife inserted comes out clean.

Remove the flan from the oven and carefully lift the cups or dish from the water bath. Allow the flan to cool to room temperature, and then chill it in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours.

Unmold the flan by first running a non-serrated knife along the inside edge of the cups or dish. Next invert the flan onto individual plates or a serving platter. The caramelized sugar syrup will cascade over the flan.

If the flan was made in a soufflé dish, cut it into 6 wedges. Garnish each portion with some of the sugar syrup. Serve at once.

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