Make 6 6-oz creme caramel
1/2 cup sugar (may use 3/4 cup if you like sweeter custard) and 6 Tbs for caramel
3 cups milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
5 whole eggs
Preheat oven to 325oF.
Make caramel: Put 6 clean, dry 5-6 oz ramekins near the stove. Put 6 Tbs sugar in a small saute pan over medium high, stir constantly until sugar melts and turns color. The dark caramel will be bitter. If you do not like bitter taste, turn off the heat when caramel is smooth, and continue stirring until light brown. Pour right into the bottom of ramekins. No need to cover the whole bottoms of ramekins with caramel.
Beat together sugar, eggs. Then add milk and vanilla extract, stir until smooth, not beating. If you are serving flan upside down like the picture, then no need to skimming or straining the mixture. Pour the mixture into caramel- lined ramekin, and arrange them into a high side baking dish (at least same height as ramekins). Pour hot water to 1/2 way up sides of ramekins. Baking for 25 minutes. The center still be slightly jiggly like jello when you wiggle them back and forth. Remove ramekins from hot bath and cool down about 1 hour, then refrigerate for at least two hours. Run a knife around the custard and put a rimmed plate over the a ramekin and hold the ramekin firmly against the plate, flip the whole thing over. Give it a quick up and down shake while still holding firmly and lift off the ramekin. Serve cold.
*You may steam the custard on simmering water. Arrange ramekins into a steamer over boiling water uncovered about 5 minutes.Then cover with the lid but leave a tiny gap for the steam escape, then low down the heat to a simmering water at medium-low heat for about 20 minutes, check like baking . Simmering is important in steaming custard. Too much steam makes custard spongy but still taste good.