Amusing Flanecdotes

In El Salvador, flan is called flan de horchata because it is made with a milk-based almond drink sold across the country.

The Mexicali Blues Cafe in Teaneck, New Jersey makes flan flavored with kahlua and laced with pomegranate seeds.

On April 11, 1994, Taste It Presents, a company in Kenilworth, New Jersey that makes prepackaged foods sold at gourmet shops, released four frozen confections including flan in its "Desserts Espanol" series.

Attention travellers. Dining out and eating flan? In Sacramento, California, flan will cost you $3.50 at Tortola's or Bull Market. Paella's in Washington D.C. will charge you $2.75.

In an interview with Charlie Rose about Six Degrees of Separation, Donald Sutherland had the following anecdote about how he felt when he was offered the role of Flanders Kittredge: "[When I heard the name of the character] I ran through one about Flanders Fields, where uncles of mine are buried, and the courage and the creation that's gone there, you know, the generation that's lost there, and the hope that was gone, and the poets. And the I thought of flan, of, you know, of creme caramel, a crust with a bunch of yellow stuff underneath. And those two images started to go together for me, and by the time I got to meet with Fred [the director] seven hours later, I had a conversation that was ready to happen, and it happened with him in such a wonderfully extraordinary way. I came out of that meeting in love with him, and so I said, 'Sure, I'll do it.'"

According to The Sunday Telegraph, the best apres-ski dish is: "either a blend of milk and olive oil, or, comfort food with plenty of energy-replacing properties and iron, preferably filled pasta in cream and mushroom sauce, followed by Chateaubriand and unlimited house red, followed by creme caramel flan, followed by Ovaltine and bed."

Flan is a very old word indeed. The Latin poet Fortunatus (530-609 A.D.) used it. The French began using it to describe a type of tart by the end of the 12th century. But the use of the word flan to describe a type of dessert derives from metallurgical flan, which is a metal disc.

Spanish writer Vital Aza once said, "If you eat flan, you have a hearty appetite."

In France, flan is known as creme caramel or creme moulee au caramel. In Sweden, the dish is called bryl_ pudding. In Britain, it is called caramel custard, although a similar dish is called Cornish burnt cream.

When The Ottawa Citizen was trying to fill a position for a new restaurant critic in 1993, the management devised a 50-question quiz about food to be given to all applicants. One of the questions involved defining cream caramel/flan.

According to one chef, flan can be made in a microwave oven.

According to writer/cooking instructor Jacqueline Higuera McMahan of The San Francisco Chronicle, flan continues to cook after it has been removed from the heat so it should be taken out of the oven before you think it quite done. While teaching a class in Santa Fe, New Mexico, she learned that flan had to be cooked for twice as long in higher altitudes--for a total of about two hours.

The Green Burrito chain of Mexican restaurants in California added flan to its menu in January 1991. In an interview with The Los Angeles Times, Ruben Rodriguez, chairman of Green Burrito's parent company GB Foods Corp., said the move was due to the fact that, "flan is very popular with Hispanics, and with it, we believe we can attract a larger share of the Hispanic market into our restaurants." When it came to naming the new dessert selection, Green Burrito chose a name with a distinctly Anglo ring: "Flan-Tastic."

Looking for kosher flan? Try Fullers Restaurant in the Seattle Sheraton Hotel and Towers.

You can buy flan at a concession stand at Tampa Stadium.

Peter Ronstadt (Linda's brother) told The New York Times in 1989 that he had fond memories of his grandmother's flan.

Jack Flan is a writer for ARTnews.

Fast-food chain Hardee's sells flan at its outlets in Puerto Rico.

When veteran infielder Tim Flannery announced his retirement from the San Diego Padres in 1989, the team responded by throwing him a "Flan Appreciation Night."

Food expert Fred Ek said in a 1989 interview with The Boston Globe that the perfect wine to go with a dessert like flan would be a 1988 Preston Muscat.

Looking for flan in France? Creme caramel--France's version of flan--is more common in the Bordeaux and Burgundy regions.

Flan is the first novel written by Stephen Tunney. It has nothing to do with custard desserts, however. The book is set during an unnamed holocaust (probably a nuclear war) that has reduced America's landscape into a smoldering, cartoonlike wasteland. The story chronicles the adventures of protagonist Flan and his magic fish Ginger Kang Kang. The book inspired Tunney/Dogbowl to release a concept album called Flan, which is based on characters and events in the book. Described by Melody Maker as "genius," the album contains songs like "Transforming The Eyeball," "Mermaid In My Coffee Cup," and "Here Come The Cannibals."

Better not mix up flan and flaN, which along with flbG is a divergent transcription unit in the bacteria Caulobacter crescentus.

Mr. Smarty Pants gets his information from books, magazines, newspapers,
the internet, radio, and television. He also includes facts he has overheard at parties.

All contents--Copyright 2008 Smarty Pants Productions