hector’s naked-cake-less starfruit take on ROSE’S heavenly CAKES: Apple Caramel Charlotte (page 215). and here is how billowy and airy the texture is (same take, but with the charlotte
this is another slice straight from the freezer:
and on the subject of wonderful texture, here is my perfect flan:
a 10 cup tube flan pan.
a 12-inch or wider pan to hold a water bath, minimum 2-inches deep, filled with 1-inch of cold tap water.
a 5-quart or larger stand mixer, fitted with the flat beater, but preferably the beater blade.
do not preheat the oven.
1 cup of sugar
1/3 cup water
1 cup of sugar
9 eggs, cold
4.5 cups of whole milk, cold
1.5 cups of heavy whipping cream, cold
1 tb vanilla essence or 1/4 tsp almond extract.
1 tb pisco (optional)
caramel: on a small sauce pan, preferably non-stick, stir the sugar and water. bring to a simmer on medium-low heat, stirring frequently. once the sugar has completely dissolved, stop stirring. increase to medium-high heat and cook until the caramel is gold color. do not cook until the caramel is brown because caramel continues to cook after removing from the heat. immediately, pour the caramel on the bottom of the tube flan pan. immediately, place the pan on the water bath, to stop the caramel cooking and prevent over burning.
flan: on the stand mixer fitted with the beater blade, mix at stir/low speed the rest of the ingredients, for 10 minutes. if you are using the flat beater, mix for 60 minutes. pour on the flan pan.
set an oven rack in the lower third of the oven. place the fan and water bath on the oven rack. turn on the oven to 300 oF. bake for 60 minutes or until the surface has slightly crusted and become very light brown. the flan will be very liquid. turn off the oven, and let the flan sit in the oven, undisturbed, until the flan and the oven have completely cooled, a minimum of 2 hours. if you are using a commercial convection oven with a convection fan as the only heat source, bake at 275oF for 60 minutes, then at 150-175oF for 30 minutes, then turn off the oven and let the flan sit in the oven for 1 hour. note: verify your oven temperature; if too hot, your flan will start to bubble and create a less than perfect smooth texture.
do not disturb of move the flan while hot or warm because it can break or jeopardize the creamy texture. remove the flan from the oven only after it has cooled completely, at this point it will be firmer like gelatin. refrigerate for 2 days, still in the pan, covered. on its second day, the flan will be much firmer and the caramel will have dissolved into a generous amount of caramel sauce.
unmolding: with a smooth sharp thin knife, loose the pan and tube edges. invert at once.