Asparagus and Green Garlic Flan

Source: Stephanie Rosenbaum. Recipe adapted From The Astrology Cookbook: A Cosmic Guide to Feasts of Love (Manic D Press, Inc., March 2009).

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This recipe was demonstrated for CUESA’s Market to Table programs on April 4, 2009.

Green garlic is a springtime treat and is nothing fancier than immature garlic, harvested before the stalks dry out and the heads form distinct, papery-wrapped cloves. Green at the top, white at the bottom, green garlic stalks look like skinny leeks with a heady whiff of garlic. To perfume this silky-rich custard, perfect for pleasing those demanding Aries rams, use the white part and about a third of the pale green stalk.

Serves 4


2 tablespoons butter
½ pound asparagus
2 or 3 stalks of green garlic, white and pale green parts only
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives, parsley, chervil, or tarragon
½ teaspoon salt
black pepper
pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
2 large eggs
⅔ cup whole milk
2 tablespoons half-and-half or heavy cream (optional)
3 tablespoons freshly grated parmesan


  1. Preheat oven to 325°F. Butter 4 ramekins, custard cups, or oven-proof glass baking dishes. Snap off woody ends of asparagus and discard. Fill a wide skillet with about ½ inch of water. Bring to a boil, add asparagus, and simmer until just tender. Drain in a colander, running cold water over the asparagus to cool. Slice asparagus stalks very finely, cutting tips in half lengthwise. In the same skillet, melt remaining butter and sauté green garlic until just softened, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat and add asparagus, herbs, salt, pepper, and nutmeg.

  2. In a small bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, cream (if using), salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Stir in asparagus mixture and grated cheese. Divide between ramekins. Set ramekins in a baking dish and set in the oven. Pour hot water in the baking dish to come up halfway around ramekins. Bake for 20 minutes, or until custards are set. Remove and let cool for 5 minutes before serving. To unmold, run a butter knife down the edges of each dish to loosen the flan. Hold a plate tightly against the top of the flan, flip over and give a sharp shake. Remove ramekin. Serve. 


Photo by Sarah Dvorak

Farmers Market Ingredients