dulce de leche

Dulce de Leche

My great grandma always had a drawer full of candy in her kitchen. My favorite ones were those Brach’s Milk Caramels with the various fruit centers; orange being my most favorite of the favorites. She also had the longest earlobes I’ve ever seen, even to this day. It came from years of wearing heavy clip on earrings. Do they even make those anymore? The clip ons, I mean? You might be wondering the same thing about the milk caramels. Or maybe you have no idea what I’m even talking about, but whatever the case may be the answer to your (my) question is yes, they do.

Until about 5 years ago, I didn’t know that this fantastically tangy milk caramel I speak of even had a name: Dulce De Leche. An Argentinian favorite, it is classically made by slowly caramelizing milk and sugar. It’s flavor is like no other: sweet and milky with a sneaky bite of acidity at the end. This chick I worked with showed me how to make it by simply boiling a can of sweetened condensed milk for 4 hours, and my life has never been the same. I know what you’re thinking…sounds a little sketchy, right? Let me tell you a little story regarding dulce de leche and sketchy. I’ve always made it the same way until a couple months ago I was skimming through food blogs and stumbled upon an even simpler technique: just stick it in the oven. Yeah, the whole can. Sounded a little scary to me, but what can I say, I’m a risk taker. So the next day when I was cleaning the kitchen, I found a can of sweetened condensed milk and decided to make a little Dulce de Leche. Let me remind you of something here: I was skimming recipes, not reading, skimming, when I discovered this technique. By no means had I actually educated myself on the proper way to go about this, i.e.; temperature, length of time, etc. I’ve mentioned previously that my oven is ancient and at that time, in desperate need of calibration, so naturally, I cranked the temperature up to like 400 or something ridiculous, and threw the can on in. Then I went about my day of housewife minus the husband duties.
About an hour and a half later, in broad daylight, I heard a gun shot. It scared the shit out of me. Not even a split second later, I smelled burning sugar and I immediatley knew the victim was my dulce de leche. I actually laughed out loud. Ha! What a mess! The top blew straight off and the can was clean! NOTHING in it!
Needless to say, I’ll be sticking to my way, thankyouverymuch. I can only speak from my personal experience, but it’s a little less sketchy to me.

Dulce De Leche

  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk
  • large pot of water
Peel label off of can, submerge in water and bring to a boil. Boil for 4 hours, making sure to keep water level above the can at all times. Remove from water with tongs and submerge in ice bath until cool.
Dulce De Leche, how do I love thee?
I love thee in my coffee, or salted on a spoon.
I love thee in my brownies, or whipped into a mousse.
That’s all I got.

64 Responses to “Ode to Dulce de Leche”

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