- ½ cup granulated white sugar
- 1 cup puréed butternut squash (canned or thawed frozen squash purée is fine)
- 2 large eggs and 2 large egg yolks
- ¼ cup light brown sugar
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- ¾ cup milk
- ½ cup heavy cream
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Put on a kettle of water to heat. For the caramel: In a medium saucepan, combine the white sugar and ¼ cup water. Bring it to a simmer, without stirring, over medium heat. Cook, swirling the pan occasionally, until the caramel is a deep amber, about 5 to 6 minutes. Divide the caramel among eight 6-ounce or larger ramekins, coating the bottom and swirling to come a bit up the sides.
In a food processor, combine the squash, whole eggs, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, and vanilla, and purée until smooth. Add the egg yolks, milk, and cream, and purée again until very smooth.
Divide the mixture evenly among the ramekins. Place the filled ramekins in a roasting pan large enough so that they aren’t touching. Pour enough hot water from the kettle to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Bake until the flans are set with just a tiny bit of jiggle in the center, about 30 to 35 minutes. Let them cool completely on a rack, then refrigerate them until cold, at least 4 hours.
To serve: Run a knife around the edge of each ramekin to loosen the custard, and dip the bottom in hot water for a few seconds. Set a plate on top, and invert it. If the custard is stuck, tap the bottom of the ramekin with the spoon, and jiggle the ramekin until it plops loose.