2 cups whipping cream
1 cup whole milk or half and half
1 vanilla bean, split
1 tablespoon butter, room temperature, for coating ramekins
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, for caramel top
2 egg yolks
7 tablespoons granulated sugar
In small saucepan, combine cream, milk or half and half, salt and vanilla bean. Allow mixture to come to a simmer. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
Coat 8 individual baking ramekins with butter.
Place sugar for caramel top in medium heavy saucepan and heat over medium heat until sugar begins to dissolve. Using rubber spatula, move sugar in from the sides as it begins to turn golden. Stir lightly until sugar is golden and smooth. Immediately pour into ramekins. Tilt to coat sides and place in larger baking pan.
In mixing bowl, beat slowly together eggs, egg yolks and sugar. Gradually add 7 tablespoons sugar. Beat only until mixed, without creating foam. Pour mixture through colander or sieve to remove any chunks. Pour mixture over caramel in ramekins.
Place baking pan into 350 degree oven. Pour enough hot water in pan to come half way up sides of ramekins. Bake about 40 minutes or until center of flan is set. Chill flan at least two hours or overnight before serving.
When ready to serve, run knife around outside edge of each ramekin. Invert onto individual plates, shaking gently to release flan. Lift ramekin straight up, caramel will run over flan.