Asparagus Flan With Cheese Sauce

READY IN: 1hr 25mins


  • For flan
  • 2
    lbs asparagus, trimmed
  • 4
    large eggs
  • 1 13
    cups whole milk
  • 2
    tablespoons freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese
  • 1 14
    teaspoons salt
  • 12
    teaspoon black pepper
  • 18
    teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg, to taste
  • For sauce
  • 14
    lb italian fontina, rind discarded and cheese coarsely grated (or cut into 1/4-inch dice if too soft to grate)
  • 12
    cup whole milk
  • 2
    large egg yolks
  • 1
    tablespoon butter


  • Make flan: Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 325°F.
  • Butter an 8- by 2-inch round cake pan and line bottom with a round of wax paper, then butter paper.
  • 3Steam asparagus in a steamer set over boiling water, covered, until very tender, 6 to 8 minutes.
  • Purée asparagus in a food processor until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes.
  • (You will have about 2 cups purée.) Whisk together eggs, milk, cheese, salt, pepper, and nutmeg in a bowl, then whisk in asparagus purée.
  • Pour asparagus mixture into pan and bake in a hot water bath until flan is set and a wooden pick or skewer inserted in center comes out clean, 50 minutes to 1 hour.
  • Transfer pan to a rack to cool slightly, 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Make sauce while flan cools: Put all sauce ingredients in a metal bowl, then set bowl over a pan of barely simmering water.
  • Heat sauce, whisking until cheese and butter are melted, and then stirring with a wooden spoon, until sauce is slightly thickened and registers 165°F on an instant-read thermometer, 5 to 8 minutes.
  • Remove bowl from pan.
  • Run a thin knife around edge of flan to loosen, then invert a serving plate over pan and invert flan onto plate.
  • Remove pan and discard paper.
  • Cut flan into wedges and serve immediately with sauce.