Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Dulce de leche in 10 minutes

Dulce de leche (which translates as milk candy) is a dessert sauce and/or flavoring from Latin American cooking. If you heat milk until the water in it evaporates, the natural milk sugars will concentrate. Then if you continue to cook the milk, the sugars will caramelize.

There is a classic home recipe for dulce de leche involving a can of sweetened condensed milk, a saucepan of water and 3 or 4 hours of slow cooking. The milk gets cooked right in its can (though you have to put some holes in the top of the can for the steam to escape or you'll have an explosion).

My favorite engineer/cook at Cooking for Engineers experimented with making dulce de leche in the microwave. He got the condensed milk to a dulce de leche sauce in about 10 minutes. With 5 more minutes of cooking he got it to the candy stage. His instructions and step-by-steps are great.

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