Sometimes Latin American restaurants make the distinction between regular flan and dolce de leche, flan served with a milk caramel sauce. Unlike crème caramel, the milk caramel sauce is added after the flan is baked and inverted. It is creamy rather than crunchy. Flan enjoys great popularity in the US, in Latin American countries, and in the Philippines. It is also very popular in Japan, where some variants may be made with soymilk, since many native Japanese do not regularly consume cow milk. There are also some instant flan mixes available. Thickening from these tend to come from the addition of either agar or gelatin. Authentic flan would probably not use either thickener, but would depend upon the addition of eggs to create the proper thickness. Most restaurant recipes, however, suggest gelatin. While flan is most often present in individual portions, some make a large flan to serve at parties. This can be a particularly visually appealing dish, especially if either dolce de leche is added to the top, or if the flan has been baked over a layer of caramelized sugar. Some even use a small blowtorch to further harden the sugar after baking. This provides a nice crunch that contrasts well with the creamy custard. When flan is made in large portions it is usually served in slices, and may be served with whipped cream. Flan is usually served chilled, and care must be taken to refrigerator it, because of its milk and egg contents. For many, flan represents the essence of comfort food.