How FLAN started my love for baking

When I was a teenager, I started watching A LOT more TV, shocking right? Well, one of my favorite things to watch, asides from MTV, was the cooking channel, specifically the baking show. Back then, you couldn't go online and check out the recipe for the ingredients or step by step explanation, and if god forbid, someone walked into the room as they were explaining an important technique there was no recording that episode either. So, I would have a notebook ready, pencil in hand and if they featured any recipes I liked I would attempt to make them.


Even though my grandma is an amazing cook, I had never cooked with her. Later in life I attempted to learn to cook from her, and oh boy was that something, but I will have to leave that story for another time. My mom was a kindergarten teacher who would find herself, later in life, going to culinary school. You can imagine then, that my knowledge for cooking let alone baking was non existent.


Well, I had NO idea what I was doing, and I am sure I had a lot of failures before I had my first success, however, they sure weren't that disappointing since I can't recall them. The first time I did something I was proud of, was when I made FLAN. This traditional Argentinean dessert can be tricky, you have to caramelize the sugar in the container you will pour the FLAN mixture in, make sure you coat it ALL with the scalding hot caramel, let it sit for a few minutes and then pour the milk and million eggs mixture into it, making sure it doesn't curdle. Once that is out of the way, you cook it, in a water bath, at a low temperature for about 4 hours...PHEW! How I managed to nail that on the first attempt still amazes me, but I did. And since that day my dad would ask for my FLAN as his birthday cake, and I would bring it to our Sunday barbecues from time to time.


There are so many things I like about baking, but I have to say my favorite, by a long shot, is the happiness it brings to the people I love. The moments we get to share together, with the excuse of over indulging for a few minutes, that turn into hours, thanks to tea, mate or coffee.


From that moment on, I explored with a lot more recipes, had a lot of new favorites, but most importantly I ALWAYS made sure I had someone special ready to share them with.


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