Portuguese Flan from Priscos (Pudim Abade de Priscos)

Pudim Abade de Priscos

My love for Portuguese sweets keeps on growing at the first sight of an eggy recipe. So after writing this 3 part series, I couldn’t resist to offer you a recipe for Pudim Abade de Priscos, originated in the Convento dos Congregados, in Braga, Portugal. Traditionally, this Pudim is made is a large single mold, but due to its richness I find it is better served in a small individual ramekin.

OBS: In Portuguese we use the word PUDIM usually referring to a molded custard, not to be confused with pudding.

Inspired by The Food & Cooking of Portugal/ Miguel Castro e Silva.

Makes 18

Ingredients:

2 cups sugar

¾ cup + 4 tablespoons water

¼ cup (45 g) lard *

1 cinnamon stick

1 small piece lemon rind

15 egg yolks (about 250 g)

¼ cup (60 ml) Port wine

½ teaspoon lemon juice

18 one-once ramekins (or custard cups, or mini muffin molds)

Procedure:

1- Pre-heat the oven to 350˚F (do not use convection oven). Line a roasting pan or a large baking dish with double thickness of paper towels. Fill a teakettle with water and put it on to boil;, when it boils, turn off the heat.

2- To make the caramel: Place 1 cup sugar and 4 tablespoons water into a medium size heavy-bottomed saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat until the sugar turns into an amber-colored caramel, about 4 minutes. Distribute the caramel carefully and evenly among the ramekins coating the bottom. Set them aside.

3- To make the pudim: In another medium heavy bottomed saucepan, bring the remaining 1 cup sugar, ¾ cup water, lard, cinnamon and lemon rind to a boil over medium-high heat. Cook until the sugar mixture becomes thick syrup (about 215 ˚F on a candy thermometer). Strain into a bowl and chill over an ice bath for 10 minutes. Discard the cinnamon stick and lemon.

4- Place the yolks in a medium bowl. Whisk in the port and lemon juice. Add the cooled sugar syrup and whisk everything until it’s nice and smooth. Strain once again into a large bowl with a spout.

5- Distribute the custard evenly among the ramekins pouring carefully without forming any bubbles. Place the ramekins inside the roasting pan and fill with hot water from the kettle to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Bake until the pudims are set, about 35 minutes. Be sure to rotate the pan once during baking time,

6- Remove the roasting pan from the oven, transfer the ramekins to a cooling rack and let it cool to room temperature, about 15-20 minutes.

7- Run a knife between the custard and the sides of the ramekins to loosen it. Place a small plate over each ramekin, quickly flip the plate and ramekin over and remove the ramekins; the pudim will shimmy out and the caramel will coat the pudim.

* lard is rendered pork fat, easy to find at your regular butcher or supermarket. Technically you can also use bacon fat, but the smoky flavor of the bacon does not go so well with this dessert (at least in my opinion).

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