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Dulce de Leche


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#91 JEB9

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Posted 10 October 2006 - 06:28 PM

You can also use the microwave. Pour a can or two in a pyrex pie dish and microwave on low power (30-40%) for fifteen minutes. Stir. Microwave again on low power for another 10-15 minutes. Stir. Microwave again for 10 minutes and stir occasionally as it cools. It might be a bit lumpy at first, but as your stir it will smooth out and get perfectly luscious. This method is fast and pretty foolproof. And not at all scary. :cool:

#92 Anna N

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Posted 11 October 2006 - 08:19 AM

So a good friend gave me a can of home-made ddl and I would like to open it and serve it tonight over home-made vanilla bean ice cream. Do I just open it, transfer it to a serving dish and offer it along with the ice cream? Do I heat it at all? Once I open the can, how long will the ddl keep?
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#93 Toliver

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Posted 11 October 2006 - 08:56 AM

I posted a recipe I got from my neighbor and it is delicious.  It is far more complex in flavor than the sweetened condensed milk stuff.

I took some to an eGullet potluck a couple of years ago and everyone who tasted it thought it was great.

Dulce de Leche from scratch.

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Thanks for posting this, Andie! The crockpot method sounded familiar to me.
But what if you don't have access to the goat milk the recipe calls for? Can you use regular milk instead? I know it won't taste the same...

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#94 Patrick S

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Posted 11 October 2006 - 10:29 AM

The operative term here is "simmer". Not boil. Boiling raises the internal temperature to 212, which causes steam. Steam make things go boom. Simmering at a lower temperature takes longer, but it is safe, as long as you do not reach the boiling point.

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I may be misunderstanding you here, but the boiling point of sweetened condensed milk is going to be a bit higher than the 212F water in the water bath, for at least two reasons. First, the addition of sugar (SCM is about 40% sugar) causes a boiling-point elevation (boiling points always raise when more solute is added to a solution). Second, as the content of the can heats up, the pressure inside increases, and the increased pressure also causes a boiling-point elevation. I'm pretty sure therefore that its not possible to bring sweetened condensed milk to a boil in a water bath. A simmer will be safer than a boil, but only because the pressure inside the can is going to be proportional to the temperature of its contents, and the lower the pressure, the lower the risk that the container will fail.

Edited by Patrick S, 11 October 2006 - 10:31 AM.

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#95 DragonflyDesserts

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Posted 11 October 2006 - 03:39 PM

so what are all the uses for dulche de leche. I'd like to use it in my cake shop but don't know exactly how its used in desserts....something authentic mexican.

THanks!
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#96 Jaymes

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Posted 11 October 2006 - 04:31 PM

so what are all the uses for dulche de leche. I'd like to use it in my cake shop but don't know exactly how its used in desserts....something authentic mexican.


Generally speaking, instead of 'dulce de leche,' Mexicans use cajeta and they usually just buy it rather than making it from scratch.

I see you're in Nebraska, but don't know where, so don't know if you can find authentic Mexican cajeta where you are. It's a VERY popular Mexican item, so if you have any Mexican markets at all, they should carry it. It even comes in squeeze bottles, handy for drizzling over pound cake, or ice cream, or sliced apples, or bananas, or spread on toast, or served in a chafing dish for caramel fondue, or heated and ladled over dessert crepes. Look for 'Coronado' brand. It's the most readily available in the US.

And here's a recipe I got from a Mexican friend. It's for a very spectacular and delicious 'special occasion' cake.

You can either use your favorite chocolate cake recipe, or a packaged cake mix, depending upon how much time you have, personal preference, etc.

Chocolate Flan Cake

1 box chocolate cake mix, or 1 batch of your favorite chocolate cake recipe
1 10.9-oz jar cajeta (pref Coronado brand, or other good, authentic, goat's milk brand)

Flan:
1 can sweetened condensed milk
½ C whole fresh milk
1 large can evap milk
8-oz cream cheese, room temp
1 tsp good-quality vanilla
5 eggs
¼ cup sugar

Preheat oven 350. Prepare chocolate cake batter, either from favorite recipe, or from a boxed chocolate cake mix.

Soften cajeta in microwave and pour into large greased bundt pan. Pour prepared cake batter into pan.

Prepare flan: Pour flan ingredients into blender or food processor. Mix well. Pour flan very slowly and evenly over cake batter. Flan will sink through batter. Cover pan tightly with foil. Set bundt pan into larger pan, set on oven rack and slide in. Carefully pour hot water into larger pan to depth of 2". Bake about 2 hours. Remove cake from water and cool 15 minutes. Invert cake quickly onto LARGE platter, and slowly and carefully remove pan. Cajeta will drip down sides of cake.

Edited by Jaymes, 11 October 2006 - 10:06 PM.

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#97 andiesenji

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Posted 11 October 2006 - 07:11 PM

I posted a recipe I got from my neighbor and it is delicious.  It is far more complex in flavor than the sweetened condensed milk stuff.

I took some to an eGullet potluck a couple of years ago and everyone who tasted it thought it was great.

Dulce de Leche from scratch.

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Thanks for posting this, Andie! The crockpot method sounded familiar to me.
But what if you don't have access to the goat milk the recipe calls for? Can you use regular milk instead? I know it won't taste the same...

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Sure. You can use any kind of milk. Cajeta is traditionally made with 100% goat milk. I happen to like the flavor with half and half, but many people use only cow's milk. A friend who raises sheep for their milk makes it with ewe's milk. I have tasted it and it is very good also.

I have seen and tasted one batch that was made using powdered whole milk, which is not easy to find. It was okay but I wouldn't make it on purpose if fresh milk was available.
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#98 Sentiamo

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Posted 12 October 2006 - 08:02 PM

I know of someone who DID have a can of condensed milk explode whilst she was out of the house. Silly girl...she allowed it to boil practically dry! Do not leave the can/s unattended, ensure they are always covered with simmering water and all should be well.

We are fortunate here in New Zealand as we can buy the stuff in cans already caramelised these days. Still, we had fun as nurses putting our cans into the sterilisers when on night duty years ago. :biggrin:

#99 iii_bake

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Posted 26 October 2006 - 03:46 AM

I simmer the can in Le Creuset Ducth oven, the steam is well sealed and the water does not evaporate. So i do not have to worry about the water drying out.

I have a question on the taste of it though.
I simmered for 4 -5 hours.. very thick...BUT the milk taste a bit sour!!!!
Does this make sense?

I need this for the banoffi pie etc...what should be the right consistency.
It should be quite thick, isn't it?...so that you can cut the pie neatly without theDDL oozing out.

Please advice.
Thanks
iii

#100 andiesenji

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Posted 26 October 2006 - 12:01 PM

It should never be sour. The uncooked sweetened condensed milk is extremely sweet to begin with and never sour at all. Was the can damaged? Dented? The seam damaged?
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#101 iii_bake

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Posted 26 October 2006 - 05:12 PM

It should never be sour.  The uncooked sweetened condensed milk is extremely sweet to begin with and never sour at all.  Was the can damaged? Dented? The seam damaged?

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I know, the milk is definitely sweet.
The can was in a perfect shape. nothing punctured.
It was just a tint of the sourness, something you can feel at the tip of your tongue.
I will try simmering a few cans and taste them at defferent period of simmering.
In the meantime, if amyone has the answer for this, kindly enlighten me.

I will update you on my findings soon,
Thanks :smile:

#102 Aphra

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Posted 01 November 2006 - 04:45 AM

Um - disclaimer - I have not personally had a can explode, nor do I know of anyone who has. That doesn't mean it won't! But I do cover the can fully with water and make sure it stays that way.


I have had a can explode. I had a long phone call and forgot about topping up the water in the pot. There was an almighty bang and sticky, semi-caramelized, condensed milk went everywhere. And I do mean everywhere.

It took me hours to clean up the mess.

#103 Lior

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Posted 28 August 2008 - 01:09 PM

I still have to perfect this recipe. Iused the recipe from the recipe gullet. I still don't get a smooth perfect result. Does anyone have a step by step guide? When exactly do I know it is finished? Temperatures? I need a an Argentinian grandma in my kitchen!!!

#104 Sebastian

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Posted 28 August 2008 - 02:08 PM

The simplest way i make it is to boil a sealed can of sweetened condensed milk by placing it in boiling water (covering the can) and keep it in there for 3 hours. remove after 3 hours, and let sit (still closed) overnight - it'll continue to cook. i've experienced the graininess when i open the can prematurely and let excess water evaporate, causing the (saturated) sugars to crystallize.

Perhaps i've been lucky, but have never had a problem with it this way. Of course, it's a fresh dulce meant to be eaten relatively quickly, as it's high Aw doesn't lend itself to long term shelf stability...

Adding a little bit of something with phosporous during cooking can help you create deeper flavors/colors more quickly if the 3 hour boil step doesn't work for you.

#105 hongda

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Posted 28 August 2008 - 04:59 PM

I've used alton brown's recipe about 3 times and it has turned out well all three times. Make sure to watch it near the end, as it can burn real easily...

http://www.foodnetwo...cipe/index.html

#106 BeeZee

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Posted 28 August 2008 - 05:38 PM

Of course, it's a fresh dulce meant to be eaten relatively quickly, as it's high Aw doesn't lend itself to long term shelf stability...

If put into a glass/pyrex container w/lid in fridge, how long does it last?
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#107 Lior

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Posted 28 August 2008 - 11:25 PM

Thanks Sebastien! I know about the condensed milk way-although Ihtough 2 hours was the time required. Anyway, I have difficultyfinding condensed milk here. The supermarkets carry one that has added vegetable oils and it is YUCKY!! So anyway, 3 hours? Okay Iwill goto aspecialtystore to see if they carry condensed milk. I still want to get it right the authentic way.

Hongda thanks- I will check that link!

#108 Kerry Beal

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Posted 29 August 2008 - 06:41 AM

Thanks Sebastien! I know about the condensed milk way-although Ihtough 2 hours was the time required. Anyway, I have difficultyfinding condensed milk here.  The supermarkets carry one that has added vegetable oils and it is YUCKY!! So anyway, 3 hours? Okay Iwill goto aspecialtystore to see if they carry condensed milk. I still want to get it right the authentic way.

Hongda thanks- I will check that link!

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Ilana,
Any asian stores around? They usually have classic condensed milk.

#109 Lior

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Posted 29 August 2008 - 07:10 AM

Hi!! Well about an hour north of me- same as where the specialty stores are. I guess I will go and stock up one of these days, and get other things to make life easier- like bought invert, glucose and corn syrup...
Thanks for the idea though. Sorry for asking but Asian, meaning from China, Taiwan, Japan, etc right?

#110 Kerry Beal

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Posted 29 August 2008 - 07:17 AM

Hi!! Well about an hour north of me- same as where the specialty stores are. I guess I will go and stock up one of these days, and get other things to make life easier- like bought invert, glucose and corn syrup...
Thanks for the idea though. Sorry for asking but Asian, meaning from China, Taiwan, Japan, etc right?

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Yup, they use a lot of condensed milk as an ingredient and tend to have it readily available in their stores.

#111 andiesenji

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Posted 29 August 2008 - 08:50 AM

I'm not home right now so can't check my notes. If you are using my recipe, I would suspect the grainy texture is because of milk with not enough butterfat.
Try substituting 1 cup of cream for 1 cup of the milk.

I tried a couple of times to make it with lower fat milk and had significant development of sugar crystals around the edges and the end result was grainy.

Personally, I don't like the condensed milk version, although it is much easier than making it from scratch, I don't think the end result has as much flavor, however that is just me and I wouldn't bother making it myself because the commercial stuff is available in almost every local store because of the large Hispanic population here.

Edited by andiesenji, 29 August 2008 - 04:13 PM.

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#112 Gabriel Lewis

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Posted 29 August 2008 - 09:51 AM

How thick is your dulce to leche? I've used Andiesenji's cajeta recipe a number of times with 3.8% milk fat and had no problems with graininess. If its grainy, then what it probably means is that there isn't enough water left to fully dissolve the sugar so some of it is crystallizing out. If that's the case, then you can simply add some fresh milk and stir until it dissolves, then cook back down to your desired consistency.

#113 Lior

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Posted 29 August 2008 - 02:04 PM

How interesting! Here full cream milk is 3%. Si yes, I did use your recipe-thank you once again! I also used goat's milk as recommended, but that is under 4%- I don't remember how much. I used a bain marie but couldn't get a boil going. SO I then poured into a pot and continued. I do not know when to stop either- by color, by texture? aLSO, how or when do you strain to get rid of the vanilla seeds? They also add a crunch- which I like but others don't realize it is from vanilla. Oh, the thickness? Thicker than bought jars of it, not anywhere near as smooth and a bit darker in color. Can I still correct it??!! We did a blind tasting test in the family of 2 bought brands and mine. Mine came in 3rd all the time! :sad:

#114 andiesenji

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Posted 29 August 2008 - 04:25 PM

The vanilla bean should be left whole so that the seeds do not escape into the milk.
No need to strain it.

I taste it to know when it is finished. It should be a deep caramel color, tending toward brown - actually a sort of chestnut color is preferred by my neighbor, who taught me the recipe and process.

When I get back home tomorrow afternoon, I will consult with Celia to see if she has a fix for the grainy problem. (I'm in New Mexico.)
I've never had it turn out that way - I have burnt it and ended up with a burnt-sugar flavor but it was never grainy.
It is possible you introduced a little water into the batch near the end? That is the only think I can think of that would cause it to seize or become grainy.
(That is why you never want to cover the container in which it is cooked.)
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#115 Gabriel Lewis

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Posted 29 August 2008 - 09:55 PM

Not to contest Andiesenji's recipe as she makes in a crockpot, I can offer what i've gleaned from my own experiences.

When I make it, I use a thick alumnium bottomed pan and place it on one of my small burners on just slightly above the very lowest heat. I have an old an electric stove that has two large burners, and two small burners, and is fairly strong. I leave it on just above the lowest heat, stirring every hour or two for about 6 hours, or until there is some definite browness and is starting to get thicker at which point I remove the vanilla bean. When it starts to get fairly thick (say not too long after it will coat the back of a spoon) I turn the heat down to its lowest and stir more frequently; say every half hour. For me to get good thickness (say the thickness of high fat greek yogurt) it takes me another 2-4 hours after I've removed the vanilla bean, and it gets very dark, about the shade of dark chocolate. I could probably get the right thickness before its that caramelized if i used higher heats eariler, but i've never tried it that way. Mine is very good, very deep and complex flavor that easily beats out any commercial kinds i've tried.

I can't imagine it'd be easy compare when yours was grainy. Did you try what I suggested? Reheating it slowly with a small amount (say 20% of total volume) of milk while mixing thoroughly, and then continuing to reduce until it is the right consistency?

#116 Lior

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Posted 29 August 2008 - 11:44 PM

No I haven't tried it yet but I will tomorrow. There isn't much to lose! And I will try it from scratch also. The vanilla bean goes in whole- not cut at all? I think part of the crunchiness was all the seeds (yeah I know... excuses excuses!). My next effort after perfecting DDL will be alphahoras! Any good recipes?!

Edited by Lior, 29 August 2008 - 11:45 PM.


#117 Kerry Beal

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Posted 30 August 2008 - 04:11 AM

No I haven't tried it yet but I will tomorrow. There isn't much to lose! And I will try it from scratch also. The vanilla bean goes in whole- not cut at all? I think part of the crunchiness was all the seeds (yeah I know... excuses excuses!). My next effort after perfecting DDL will be alphahoras! Any good recipes?!

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I'll bite - what's alphahoras?

#118 Lior

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Posted 30 August 2008 - 05:22 AM

Alfajoras - I spelled it incorrectly! It is an Argentinam cookie- I think made with corn starch in addition to regular wheat flour. It is a sandwich cookie with DDL in the middle. Itis very light and fluffy and then the side are rolled in toasted coconut.

#119 Kerry Beal

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Posted 30 August 2008 - 06:16 AM

Alfajoras - I spelled it incorrectly! It is an Argentinam cookie- I think made with corn starch in addition to regular wheat flour. It is a sandwich cookie with DDL in the middle. Itis very light and fluffy and then the side are rolled in toasted coconut.

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Those look tasty!

#120 polpus

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Posted 01 September 2008 - 04:46 PM

As someone who lives in Buenos Aires, Argentina... I felt like I had to chime in.

I'm a HUGE Dulce De Leche fan... gimme a container of it and a spoon and you'll see it disappear in 10 minutes.

I have tried just about every brand they sell here, and believe me, none comes closer to the Conaprole brand dulce de leche from Uruguay.

Unfortunately they don't sell it here, so every time I go to Uruguay I bring back 4-5 jars of it.

I've seen it sold on eBay a few times, and also this online store seems to sell it:

http://www.amigofood...dudele440g.html

If you ever have the chance to get some of it, by all means do... it's amazing.


As for the sandwich cookies, the correct name is Alfajores, and there's tons of varieties. Probably the most famous Argentinian brand of Alfajores is Havanna ( http://www.havanna.com.ar/ ). They are yummy.

Here in Buenos Aires you have about 20 different options of Alfajores when you go to the supermarket. If you wanna take a look at what's available, go here:

http://www.cotodigital.com.ar

Click on "Saltear Introduccion". Then click on "Ingresar Como Invitado". Then, on the left pane, open "Panaderia y Golosinas" > "Golosinas" > "Alfajores".


Another type of alfajores is "Alfajores De Maicena" (cornstarch alfajores). They are crumbly and delicious. If you want a good recipe for them, let me know and I'll post it here.



Cheers,
Federico

Edited by polpus, 01 September 2008 - 05:16 PM.