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Randy Mayor; Melanie J. Clarke Photo by: Randy Mayor; Melanie J. Clarke

Deconstructed Flan

While keeping the traditional flavor profile of flan with all of its ingredients intact, this recipe rearranges them.

Cooking Light MARCH 2004

  • Yield: 6 servings


  • Yogurt Cheese:
  • 1 (32-ounce) carton vanilla low-fat yogurt, drained overnight
  • Ice Cream:
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup half-and-half
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
  • Sauce:
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup boiling water
  • 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise


To prepare yogurt cheese, place a colander in a 2-quart glass measure or medium bowl. Line colander with 4 layers of cheesecloth, allowing cheesecloth to extend over outside edges. Spoon yogurt into colander. Cover loosely with plastic wrap, and refrigerate 12 hours. Spoon yogurt cheese into a bowl; discard liquid. Cover and refrigerate.

To prepare ice cream, combine 1/4 cup sugar and eggs in a medium bowl, stirring well with a whisk. Combine milk and half-and-half in a heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean, and add seeds and bean to milk mixture. Heat to 180° or until tiny bubbles form around edge of pan, stirring frequently (do not boil). Gradually add milk mixture to egg mixture, stirring constantly with a whisk. Return milk mixture to pan; cook over medium heat until thick (about 5 minutes), stirring constantly. Remove from heat. Place pan in a large ice-filled bowl until mixture cools to room temperature (about 25 minutes), stirring occasionally. Remove vanilla bean. Pour mixture into the freezer can of an ice-cream freezer; freeze according to manufacturer's instructions. Spoon ice cream into a freezer-safe container; cover and freeze 1 hour or until firm.

To prepare the sauce, place 1/3 cup sugar in a small, heavy saucepan over medium-high heat; cook until sugar dissolves, stirring as needed to dissolve sugar evenly (about 6 minutes). Continue cooking about 1 minute or until golden. Remove from heat; carefully stir in water (caramelized sugar will seize slightly and stick to spoon). Place pan over medium-high heat until caramelized sugar melts. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean; add seeds and bean to mixture. Cook 2 minutes or until reduced to 6 tablespoons, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat, and let stand 10 minutes. Discard vanilla bean.

Place 1/4 cup yogurt cheese into each of 6 bowls; top with 1 tablespoon sauce and 1/2 cup ice cream. Serve immediately.

Nutritional Information

Amount per serving
  • Calories: 319
  • Calories from fat: 27%
  • Fat: 9.7g
  • Saturated fat: 5.5g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 3.2g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 0.5g
  • Protein: 13.2g
  • Carbohydrate: 43.8g
  • Fiber: 0.0g
  • Cholesterol: 140mg
  • Iron: 0.5mg
  • Sodium: 172mg
  • Calcium: 366mg

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Deconstructed Flan Recipe