Cook 1/2 cup maple syrup in a heavy saucepan over medium-high heat until syrup reaches hard ball stage (260°). Pour immediately into 6 (6-ounce) custard cups coated with cooking spray; tip quickly to coat bottom of cups. Set aside.
Place flour in a medium bowl; gradually add remaining 1 cup maple syrup, stirring with a wire whisk until blended. Add milk, vanilla, and eggs; beat at low speed of a mixer until well-blended. Pour evenly into prepared cups; place cups in a 13 x 9-inch baking pan. Add hot water to pan to a depth of 1 inch. Bake at 375° for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until a knife inserted in center comes out clean. Remove cups from water; let cool completely on a wire rack. Cover and chill 2 hours.
To serve, loosen edges of custard with a knife or rubber spatula. Place a dessert plate, upside down, on top of each cup; invert custard cups onto plates. Drizzle any remaining syrup over custard.
New England Culinary Institute, Montpelier, Vermont
The overall taste of this dessert was far too sweet. It did have the maple syrup taste that I was expecting, but it also seemed to have more sweetness than I was in for. Also, the texture of the flan was not as rich and creamy as I'd expected... it was closer to "airy" which was not what I was shooting for.
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