450 g Sweet short pastry ( 1 lb)
1 pn Flour
30 g Butter, for greasing (1 oz)
1 Egg yolk, mixed with 1 ts
300 g Sugar (11 oz)
1 l Milk ( 1 3/4 pint)
1 Vanilla pod,split lengthways
1 Cinnamon stick
1 22 cm/9 in flan ring, about
-- 4 cm/1 1/2 in deep
Baking or dried beans
The pastry case
Roll out the pasry to a thickness of about 2-3 mm / 1/8 in. Grease
the flan ring and line it with the pastry, pulling the edges up
gently with your fingertips to make a frill. Refrigerate for 20
Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 220 oC / 425 oF.
Prick the bottom of the pastry case with a fork, line it with
greaseproof paper, fill with baking beans and bake blind for 15-20
minutes. Leave to cool slightly, then lift out the beans and remove
With a pastry brush, brush all over the inside with the egg yolk -
milk mixture, then return the case to the oven for about 5 minutes,
until the glaze is lightly coloured. Leave in the flan ring and keep
at room temperature.
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Reduce the oven temperature to 150 oC / 300 oF.
Put the eggs in a mixing bowl with about half the sugar and beat
until pale and of a ribbon consistency.
In a saucepan, bring the milk to the boil with the split vanilla pod,
cinnamon stick and the rest of the sugar. As soon as it boils, pour
it on to the egg mixture in the bowl, WHISKING CONTINUOUSLY. Scrape
the seeds of the vanilla pod into the mixture, then discard the pod
and cinnamon stick. Pass the custard through a sieve, pour into the
pastry case and cook immediately for about 45 minutes, until the
filling is just set. The top should be an attractive nutty brown.
When the flan is almost cold, lift off the ring, carefully slide the
flan on to a serving plate and serve immediately at room temperature.
(Albert and Michel Roux, The Roux Brothers, French country cooking, M
Papermac, 1992, ISBN 0-333-57670-5)