Dulce de Leche
This confection also known as manjar blanco and arequipe and is featured in many pastries and desserts in South America. It made by heated sweetened sugar which gives it a unique rich caramel flavour. Its name translated means milk candy or milk jam. It is particularly popular in Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil and Paraguay.
There are also other versions in other counties, for example in El Salvador it has a more crumbly texture where the sugar has almost crystallised. There is a mexican version made from sweetened goats milk called cajeta. In France there is a similar confection called confiture de lait. It is very similar to the spreadable form of Dulce de Leche.
The most common way to produce this confection is by simmering milk slowly, constantly stirring. Although this can be avoided by using a double boiling method. This method doesn’t allow it to burn as the mixture caramelises and condenses. Although the milk can be heated in an over although there is less control over the eventual consistency.
I am sure that you could like to give Dulce de Leche a try. It is actually far easier to make then to buy, It can be prepared using a minimum of ingredients. You could be make your very own Dulce de Leche in no time. It can actually by made in around 45 minutes.
1. 1 can of condensed milk
2. 1 can of evaporated milk
3. 1/2 teaspoon of baking powder
4. Cinnamon Sticks (optional for flavouring)
5. 1 tablespoon of corn syrup
6. 1 teaspoon of vanilla
1. Place the milk and the corn syrup into a pan. If you prefer to add a little flavour add the cinnamon sticks.
2. Bring the heat up to a gentle medium heat, stirring all the time. You will notice the water start to evaporate as steam rises. Stir more quickly at this stage to prevent the mixture from sticking to the bottom of the pan as this causes it to burn. You may need to adjust the temperature to maintain a gentle simmer.
3. After a while you will notice the mixture begin to thicken and change colour. Carry on stirring.
4. You will then notice the mixture begin to get much thicker and big bubbles forming on the surface. Next to check if its done take out spoon out and drip some onto the surface. If this ribbon doesn’t disappear after 10 seconds it is done.
5. Turn off the head and let the whole mixture cool off. Remove the cinnamon and then add a little vanilla if you prefer.
6. Allow it to cool completely, it is ready to serve.
This of course is a great recipe to start off making your own Dulce de Leche. There are some variants but this is certainly a good one for the beginner.