This japanese take on crème caramel/flan will blow your mind.
Keyword: baking, pudding
1cupwhole milkfull fat
Heat the oven to 300°F. Bring a pot of water to a simmer - you’ll need this for the water bath. Have 2 heat proof ramekins/pudding molds (at least 1 cup) ready for the caramel as well as an oven safe baking dish that can hold both puddings.
Make The Caramel
In a small sauce pan, add 1/4 cup sugar and 1 tablespoon water without stirring together. Heat over medium high heat until the sugar starts to dissolve on its own and caramelize. Let bubble until it turns a beautiful amber. Swirl the pot if needed to fully incorporate the sugar. When a deep brown, remove the heat from the pan and very carefully add in 1 tablespoon of water. The caramel will hiss and sputter, so watch out! Swirl to combine.
Immediately pour the caramel into the ramekins/pudding molds, as equally as possible. Swirl to spread across the bottom of the pudding molds. Set aside.
Make The Pudding
In another small sauce pan, heat up the milk and 1/4 cup of sugar over medium-low heat while stirring, until the sugar is dissolved, without letting the mixture come up to a boil. Remove from the heat when the sugar is dissolved.
Lightly beat the eggs with the vanilla in a medium bowl, being sure to fully incorporate the whites with the yolks. Slowly whisk in 1/4 of the warm cream into the eggs, incorporating fully. Continue to add the cream slowly. Strain the mixture into another bowl or liquid measuring cup.
Pour the custard into the ramekins/pudding molds then cover the tops with aluminum foil. Place in the baking dish and add the simmering water, about 1/2 up the side of the ramekins/pudding molds. Place in the preheated oven and bake for 40-45 minutes. Jiggle the puddings slightly to see if they are done. They should be slightly wobbly but not liquid.
Remove from the oven and carefully remove the ramekins from the baking dish and let cool on a wire rack for 1 hour then chill for minimum 4 hours or overnight.
To serve, run a butter knife or offset spatula around the edge and flip out onto a serving dish. Top with softly whipped cream and a cherry, if desired. Enjoy!
If you want to make smaller purin, just divide the mix between 4 smaller ramekins. Decrease the bake time by 5 minutes.