Persimmon Flans with Honeyed Whipped Cream
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
In a large mixing bowl, combine 1/2 cup sugar with cinnamon, coriander, and nutmeg. Using an electric mixer at moderate speed, being mixing, adding the eggs one by one. Then add the persimmon pulp until the mixture holds together. Add the evaporated milk, vanilla, and lemon juice, and mix until the batter is smooth. Set aside.
In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, combine the remaining 3/4 cups of sugar with water and cook over medium heat until the mixture caramelizes, about 10 minutes. When the sugar has caramelized, immediately remove from the heat to stop cooking.
Assemble four (6 to 8-ounce) ramekins or custard cups. Wearing an oven mitt on the hand that holds the saucepan, carefully pour a little caramel into the bottom of each ramekin. Then pour about 1/3 cup of persimmon batter on top of the caramel. Set the prepared ramekins in a deep-sided baking dish and pour enough water around them to reach halfway up the sides. Cover the baking dish with foil and bake for 30 to 40 minutes, or until the flans are set. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool. Refrigerate each flan, covered with plastic wrap, to set.
Just before serving, whip the cream in a medium bowl until it forms soft peaks. Blend in the honey, then whip again. Set aside.
Remove the flans from the refrigerator and run a small paring knife around the rim of each. Hold a dessert plate over the top of each ramekin and invert so that the flan and caramel are positioned in the center of each plate. Place a dollop of honeyed whipped cream on each portion and serve.
Recipe courtesy Judith Fertig