ffwD–Pumpkin-Gorgonzola Flans (November 5th)

To be honest, I wanted to make the caramel-topped semolina cake first but I’m going to make that as part of a celebration dinner on Saturday along with the roast chicken for les paresseux. So, I was torn between this and the potato gratin as my first November recipe, with the runner-up being the side dish for this Saturday’s celebration dinner. (Yes, this will be a completely yummy and rich dinner!)

Anyway, I had to debate between the flans and the gratin. Seriously, this was my thought process:

Gorgonzola in a flan? But, flans are supposed to be sweet, right? A savory flan? Intriguing…I get to use pumpkin, too. And, I’ve been meaning to try more pumpkin. It is autumn. Plus, I’m not at Fox & Obel for the Gruyère. I hope the flans aren’t time-consuming to make. If I make the flans, will I have enough pans to make roast chicken and the gratin and the cake at the same time? But, do I really want to carry a bag of potatoes home right now? Maybe the chicken will taste better with the potatoes as a side.

All this while I’m standing in the grocery store in front of the dairy case and deciding whether to turn left to the canned pumpkin or right to the produce aisle for the potatoes. Yes, this is how my complicated mind works. To quote my niece, “Silly Auntie!”

I’m also on a quest for new and different Thanksgiving side dishes. I mean, the holiday is all about the sides, right? I’m somewhat on the fence about these flans though. Gourds aren’t really used in my family, except for the occasional yellow squash used in a Filipino chicken dish.

I used my sister and her girlfriend as guinea pigs. My sister did not care for them and said, “The ramekins tricked me. I thought it would be sweet.” My sister’s girlfriend ate the whole thing but discarded the walnuts because she doesn’t care for those. As for myself, the Gorgonzola is super-creamy while the walnuts add substance so I didn’t feel like I was slurping my dish. I will say this: the tip about placing a double layer of paper towels in the roasting pan under the ramekins really works! The ramekins did not slide at all! I’ll have to do this the next time I make crème brûlée.

This recipe and all the ffwD recipes can be found in Dorie Greenspan’s Around My French Table: More Than 300 Recipes from My Home to Yours.

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22 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Cakelaw
    Nov 04, 2010 @ 18:54:28

    Great job, and I am glad that you found them delicious. I think the combination sounds good, but the photo in the book was scary; however, I will plough on and make them!

  2. Cher
    Nov 04, 2010 @ 19:36:05

    I am glad to see another good review of the flans – it is easing my worry about the flavor combination.

    I argue with myself about meal plans all the time!

  3. Jessica
    Nov 04, 2010 @ 21:16:40

    What an interesting-looking dish. I agree, the ramekin would most likely trick me too.

  4. beth
    Nov 05, 2010 @ 00:12:39

    I’m glad you gave these a try. I loved them but I did tweek with the recipe a bit. Loved the post . B

  5. Mia
    Nov 05, 2010 @ 02:27:33

    Ha ha, im glad u gave in this savoury flan and i have it lined as a thanksgiving side too!!
    And i cant even find g.cheese bdw.
    Live in a tiny state and have to drive 2hrs for a place to find all cheese’s!

    Ha ha, i think u had the perfect tasters and it gives a pic of what to expect:-)
    Am looking foward to try this one!

  6. Elaine
    Nov 05, 2010 @ 06:34:39

    Your flan looks wonderful! I have only had sweet flan, so I am looking forward to making this and having a taste.

  7. Anne Marie
    Nov 05, 2010 @ 07:05:40

    I turned towards the potatoes… This is on my to do list, although it seems a little more risky than the potatoes. If you are still looking for sides, I made the brussels sprouts, and I am a hater of the tiny cabbages, and we all enjoyed the dish.

  8. Candy
    Nov 05, 2010 @ 08:26:55

    Looks great! I liked the tip about the paper towels too.

    BTW – I love Fox & Obel and always make a point of visiting when I go to Chicago.

  9. StephIrey
    Nov 05, 2010 @ 09:40:49

    Looks great and I’m glad you liked them. I can’t wait to try these and am wondering if my hubby and son will like them (they like all the flavors separately and they love flan and custards…just wonder if they’ll like savory flan)! Thanks for verifying the tip on the papertowels!

  10. Trevor Sis Boom
    Nov 05, 2010 @ 09:55:53

    I would be shunned for a year if I ever messed with the Thanksgiving menu but I CRAVE new sides to present. These flans looks wonderful and have inspired me to do this one this weekend!
    Trevor Sis. Boom.

  11. Jessica of My Baking Heart
    Nov 05, 2010 @ 12:28:24

    I did the same thing… while picking up Gorgonzola at the store! Not sure how I’ll like it (I’m not a fan of bleu cheese), but I’m giving it a try. Will make these in the next day or two. Yours look lovely and give me hope that I’ll love them! 🙂

  12. Carmen
    Nov 05, 2010 @ 12:48:11

    Not a huge fan of the pumpkin flan recipe. It looked great when you presented it to me but I guess I was tricked into thinking it was going to be sweet. The apple cake was great though. Bring back the apple cake!

  13. Mary
    Nov 05, 2010 @ 15:06:56

    I love that your sister said that the ramekin tricked her :). I am excited to try out this recipe myself.

  14. Steph@stephsbitebybite
    Nov 05, 2010 @ 16:56:36

    I’m really curious to see how I like this recipe. I’m not a huge fan of Blue Cheese, so I don’t know if I’m gnna use it. But your little ramekins look great!

  15. Betty @ scrambled hen fruit
    Nov 05, 2010 @ 21:51:47

    I was torn between those two dishes as well. 🙂 I wasn’t sure how I’d like these, but I was pleasantly surprised. I drizzled honey on mine, and that added just the right amount of sweetness.

  16. Lana
    Nov 06, 2010 @ 02:05:03

    I am glad to hear more positive feedbacks on this flan. I made it, loved it, and will make it for Thanksgiving as a side dish.
    And I can relate to your thought process, completely:)
    Looking forward to more FFwD recipes!

  17. Flourchild
    Nov 06, 2010 @ 10:33:29

    Im glad you liked this recipe. It’s different and I can’t wait to try it. Yours look great!

  18. evilcakelady
    Nov 06, 2010 @ 14:40:37

    your inner monologue at the grocery store had me laughing as i do that all the time! i’m excited to try these flans as i love the combination of pumpkin and gorgonzola.

  19. Serene
    Nov 06, 2010 @ 16:02:07

    We didn’t like it at all, and reading your review, I see that you didn’t actually say you liked it. Did you? 🙂

    • yummychunklet
      Nov 06, 2010 @ 16:20:36

      You know, I didn’t hate the pumpkin flans. I loved the Gorgonzola and walnut portions but the pumpkin was the strange part. I would eat this again if someone else made it, but I’ll probably have to make a single serving if I want this again.

  20. onewetfoot
    Nov 06, 2010 @ 21:16:51

    I’m so looking forward to making these! If only to find out what my household’s verdict will be on the flavour. Good photos and a great story to go with them.

  21. Karen
    Nov 07, 2010 @ 22:45:58

    Glad these turned out so well. I think this is one of those recipes that you love or hate. I think I would be on track with your sister. Can’t wait for next weeks recipe! 🙂

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