Sometimes you just need a crispy, crunchy snack. Instead of reaching for some overly processed, sodium laden bag of chips, try making a batch of these Burdock Chips. The crunch you crave, with the added bonus of all the nutrition benefits of burdock root. Full read more
Category: Gluten Free
Coconut Flan is one of the most popular desserts on our menu. And while it is a nod to the enduring love Miamians have for Latin American flan (you can seriously get flan even at our gas stations), the addition of coconut makes it closer to the iconic Vietnamese dessert Báhn Flan. Our Coconut Flan is a rich and creamy make-ahead dream of a dessert. The individual servings feel really special and make a beautiful presentation. It’s naturally gluten free, and it makes 10 servings, making it ideal for a dinner party. Or, since it lasts about a week or so in the fridge, I won’t tell if you make it and eat the whole batch whenever you’re craving a little something sweet.
Coconut Flan Starts with Caramel
Making caramel is easier than you might think. It just requires patience and a watchful eye. I make what’s called a wet caramel-meaning that there is water along with sugar in the pan. I think it’s more fool proof and I’ve never had to start over because I’ve burned the caramel. And if you’ve ever watched The Great British Baking Show, you know that making caramel can stump even the best amateur cooks. Because the water has to cook off before the sugar can start to caramelize, wet caramels do take a bit longer. But I figure, what’s a couple minutes compared to having to start the whole process over again.
And before I start, I get a large bowl of cold water ready in the sink, so that when the caramel is the desired color, I can quickly stop the cooking process by dipping the bottom of the pan in the cool water. Once caramel gets to the right color, it can quickly start to burn from the accumulated heat in the pan.
Let me give you an obvious tip that will ease your anxiety: use white granulated sugar. As you can see in my photos, I only had natural sugar, which is why it already looks a little brown before I even started to cook. The light brown color can be difficult for cooks who don’t often make caramel since the white sugar turning a deep amber color is the sign that your caramel is ready. The taste is the same, but I suggest using regular granulated white sugar, especially if you’ve never made caramel before, so you can carefully watch it as starts to brown.
When it’s a nice golden brown, I take it off the and carefully stir it. It is still cooking at this point, and stirring it helps to make the caramelization uniform. When it’s the color I want, I quickly put it in the bowl of cold water.
Baking the Coconut Flan
I can never really decide which part is best-the caramel or the velvety coconut custard. Luckily, we don’t have to. Yes, 12 egg yolks are a lot. Save the whites and make a healthy egg white omelet. That’s called balance!
This flan is more similar in texture to the French creme caramel than Latin flan which is often very dense. It’s ultra creamy and just sweet enough. I would suggest making it the way the recipe is written, but if you want to cut some of the fat and calories, you can substitute coconut milk instead of cream or use whole milk instead of the half and half. I would not suggest using low fat milk or fat free condensed milk. It’s just not worth it.
Once the mixture is velvety smooth, it’s time to bake the coconut flan. I make a water bath to insure that they cook very gently and evenly.
Bake the flan for about 45-55 minutes, until just set. The center shouldn’t look wet, but it should jiggle slightly when tapped. I turn off the oven, keep the door open, and let them cool for 20 minutes in the oven.
The flan need to chill in the fridge overnight or for at least 4 hours. Which makes this so convenient for entertaining. Then all you have do on the day of is to plate them right before serving.
Prepare for oohs and ahhs when everyone sees your caramel gloriously bathe the coconut flan.
Honestly this is perfection just like this. But if you’re feeling fancy a sprig of fresh mint provides a nice pop of color, and a sprinkling of toasted coconut chips add a nice crunch.
Give this crowd pleasing dessert a try and let me know what you think. Please take a second to rate and comment on the recipe below, and show off your coconut flan by tagging us in your pics @funkyasiankitchen, we love seeing your creations!
- 1 ¼ cups granulated sugar
- ¾ cup water
- 19 oz can coconut cream
- 1 cup half and half
- 14 oz can condensed milk
- 12 eggs
- Mint sprigs
- Crunchy coconut strips
- Set 10 (1 cup size) aluminum cups on a rimmed baking tray.
- Set a bowl larger than the diameter of the pan you will be using in the sink and fill it with water.
- In a small saucepan, combine the sugar and the water. Turn the heat to medium high and stir the sugar just until it melts. Let the sugar water boil. It will start to thicken and bubble more slowly as it reaches the candy stage.
- Continue cooking until the sugar turns a light amber color. This whole process will take about 8-10 minutes. Take the pot off the heat and gently and carefully use a spoon and continue mixing as the sugar will continue to darken.
- As soon as the caramel is the right color, stop the cooking process by dipping the pot into the bowl of cold water. (Do this in the sink as the water may hiss and spit.)
- Pour or spoon the caramel evenly into the containers. Set aside to cool.
- Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and set the oven rack to the middle.
- In a large bowl separate the egg yolks, saving the whites for another purpose. Add the coconut cream, condensed milk, and half and half.
- Whisk until the mixture is well combined. Pour the mixture through a mesh to eliminate any unmixed egg.
- Pour the mixture into the aluminum tins.
- Put the tray into the oven and then carefully pour about 3 cups of water into the baking tray (the water should come up to near the edge of the tray, about ⅓ of the way up the aluminum tins).
- Bake for 45-55 mins until just set. If you tap the side of one, it should jiggle loosely but the center should not be wet.
- Turn the oven off and open the oven door. Let cool for 20 minutes before moving the tray out of the oven. Transfer the aluminum tins to a dry tray. Refrigerate overnight or for at least 4 hours.
- When you are ready to serve, run a pairing (or steak) knife along the edge of the flan. Gently flip the tin over onto a small plate and then pierce the middle of the tin. This will create an air pocket allowing the flan to plop onto the plate.
- Garnish with a little mint or some coconut chips as desired.
*This is a rich and creamy flan. You can substitute the half and half for whole milk or substitute coconut milk for the coconut cream if you prefer a lighter flavor.
*If you do not have aluminum tins, you can use any 8 oz (1 Cup) size oven safe bowls. Once the flans are baked and cooled, run a knife along the outer edge and push gently along the edge of the flan when turning it out to break the seal. If you’re having problems turning out the flan, just eat it out of the bowl itself. It’s perfectly fine and you save yourself from having to wash an additional dish!
Keywords: flan, coconut, dessert, sweets, holiday, party
How do we love shrimp? Let us count the ways. There’s Green Curry, Salt Baked, Coconut, Spicy Salads, Noodles.…you get the drift. But when I want an easy appetizer that is sure to wow people, I reach for this Tamarind Shrimp. It’s super fast but has a sophisticated feel. The shrimp get nice and crispy, and the tamarind sauce is to die for. This is a Thai inspired dish, and the flavors will have you feeling the tropics.
Tamarind Shrimp Sauce
Tamarind concentrate, sometimes called tamarind pulp or paste, is a fundamental ingredient in Thai Cuisine. It has a complex sweet and sour flavor that is essential to foods like Pad Thai as well as countless soups, curries, beverages, and sweets. Here we mix it with fish sauce, sugar, and spices for an assertively fruity, funky sauce with just the right touch of sweetness.
Looking for ways to use up the rest of your tamarind concentrate? Check out:
The secret to shrimp that’s perfectly golden and crispy when lightly fried? Potato starch! A coating of potato starch limits the oil that the shrimp will absorb, helping them fry up to crispy perfection. It also keeps my Tamarind Shrimp gluten free. A little egg white helps the potato starch to adhere, and then they are ready to pan fry.
When the shrimp have absorbed all that amazing sauce, they are ready. Tamarind Shrimp makes a nice sized appetizer for 4, or a light supper for 2, especially served with Coconut Rice. Try them soon and let me know what you think by commenting and rating the recipe below, and by tagging us in your pics @funkyasiankitchen; we love hearing from you!
- 1 pound jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined (I used 13/15 size)
- ⅓ cup potato starch
- 1 egg white
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 4 Tablespoons oil
- ¼ cup tamarind concentrate
- 2 Tablespoons fish sauce
- 2 Tablespoons sugar
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- ¼ teaspoon granulated garlic
- ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
- ¼ ground coriander
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
- Combine the tamarind concentrate, fish sauce, sugar, crushed red pepper flakes, and black pepper. Stir until sugar has dissolved. Set aside.
- Place the shrimp in a bowl and add the egg white. Mix to coat the shrimp. Put the potato starch in a small bowl. Dip the shrimp, one at a time, into the potato starch so that it is well coated. Set aside.
- Heat a large pan over medium high heat for several minutes. Add 2 tablespoons of oil and swirl to coat. Place half of the shrimp in the pan in one layer and cook for 2 minutes. Flip and cook for another 2 minutes. Transfer the shrimp to a plate.
- Repeat with the other half of the shrimp.
- Return the pan to the stove. If the pan is dry, add 1 Tablespoon of oil. Add the garlic and cook for 10 seconds. Next add the sauce and bring to a simmer.
- Add the shrimp to the sauce and cook for 1 minute, stirring to coat the shrimp. The shrimp should have absorbed most of the sauce and the pan will be mostly dry.
- Serve immediately.
Keywords: tamarind, shrimp, seafood, appetizers, thai