Another pumpkin recipe. #Sorrynotsorry.
But seriously, how amazing would this pumpkin flan be as the final note to an intimate Thanksgiving gathering? I can't even. It's elegant, lighter and far more imaginative than the standard pumpkin pie that we've all had about a million times throughout our lifetimes, am I right?
I love the idea of individual servings if your Thanksgiving table has say, 8 guests or less. Any more than that and you're just asking for a mild panic attack- and no one wants that. But for a smaller affair I think it's a fine idea. It makes people feel special when they receive their own fancy little dessert!
Bonus: It's even easier to make than pumpkin pie! And since this is basically just a pumpkin pie filling of sorts minus the crust, no one will even miss the traditional standby. Plus, with a yummy built-in caramel sauce, your guests will surely shower you with ooohs and ahhhs.
I chose to decorate my pumpkin flan with pretty jewel-like pomegranate seeds, but don't stop there- fresh whipped cream and toasted pumpkin seeds would also make delightful accents to this dainty dessert.
1 cup sugar, divided
1 cup heavy cream
2 egg yolks
1 cup pureed or canned pumpkin
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 tsp. allspice
1/4 tsp. salt
Pomegranate seeds, for garnish (optional)
1. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray six ramekins with nonstick cooking spray and arrange ramekins in a baking pan with high sides.
2. Heat 1/2 cup of sugar in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring often, until sugar caramelizes and turns dark brown, about 7-8 minutes. Working quickly so that sugar does not harden, divide caramel equally among ramekins.
3. Bring heavy cream to a simmer in a saucepan, then remove from heat and set aside. Add remaining 1/2 cup of sugar, eggs, egg yolks, pumpkin, vanilla, spices and salt to a medium sized bowl and mix until smooth. Slowly add hot cream to mixture, whisking until combined.
4. Divide filling evenly among ramekins and fill baking pan halfway with boiling water. Transfer baking pan to oven and bake until custard is just set, about 30 minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool completely.
5. When flans have cooled, place a dessert plate on top of each ramekin and invert (carefully run a butter knife around the edge if flans do not slide out easily). Allow caramel syrup to pour over the top of each flan and garnish with pomegranate seeds if desired.