Crème Caramel (Flan)

Flan is one of the deserts I grew up with and I wouldn't dream of doing without! But Crème Caramel with no milk? Is that possible? You betcha! I recently had Argentine friends Darío and Gustavo over for a few days. They love my cooking but are the toughest food critics I know. So, I decided to have them taste this dairy and sugar free version of our traditional delicacy and see what they said.
They loved it! So now it ready to go on the blog!

What you need (for 12)
•12 oven proof ramekins of approx. 10 cm diameter and 6 cm high
•oven dish big enough to fit 8 ramekins

• 1 l good quality almond (or coconut) milk
(I like to buy Ecomil because it is certified organic, has no added sugar and is one of the few brands that contains just almonds and water)!
•12 + 3 tbs of agave nectar (honey or maple syrup will work too but I prefer agave nectar because it has a lower glycemic index)
1 vanilla pod
•9 whole eggs

What you do
•preheat the oven to 175°C
•put 8 tbs of agave nectar in a pan, heat and boil for approx. 5 min (or till it starts to thicken)
•pour the hot agave nectar into the 12 ramekins and try to cover as much of the inside of the ramekin with it (hold the ramekin and tilt)
•slice the vanilla pod through the middle and together with the almond milk, heat it up in a pan. When it is about to reach the boiling point, remove it from the heat and let it cool down a bit
(stir once in a while making sure the almond milk does not burn on the bottom of the pan)
•meanwhile beat the eggs together with 3 tbs of agave nectar to a cream
•look for the vanilla pod. If you find the seeds are still on the pod, take a sharp knife and scrape them off into the almond milk. Discard the pod.
•while mixing, now ladle the hot almond milk into the egg mixture, little by little
•pour the mixture into 12 ramekins
•place the 12 ramekins in the oven dish and fill the oven dish with water
(the water should cover 3/4 of the ramekins)
•place in the middle of the oven and cook for 50 min
(check the consistency after 40 min with a tooth pick. If the mixture is firm, and your tooth pick comes out dry, it means it is ready)
•once cooled down, you can place the ramekins in the fridge. When you are ready to serve, free the flan from the ramekin by losening the top edge of the flan from the ramekin with a knife. Then place the serving plate on top of the ramekin, turn it upside down and shake. It should release by itself.

You notice that while in the oven your ramekin mixtures start to darken a bit too fast at the top. No worries! Just cover the pan with a tin foil tent (making sure the foil does not stick to the ramekin).