Argentineans, Paraguayans, even Brazilians love their dulce de leche… I know because I just came from a trip in which I almost ate dulce de leche on a daily basis. And the dulce de leche I am talking about is the dulce de leche known in México as cajeta, made from cooked and reduced sweetened milk. Sometimes it’s made from cow’s milk, sometimes from goat’s milk, but every time it’s exquisitely delicious.
There are aisles full of different brands of dulce de leche at every store we visited in Argentina, Paraguay or Brazil. The most popular brands in Paraguay, which is where we stayed the longest, are Trebol and Lactolanda. With their factory very close to Coronel Oviedo, Lactolanda was certainly the most popular brand we ate throughout our trip.
We ate dulce de leche with everything…. On its own, over crackers, with passion fruit mousse… even with queso paraguay. When I am on a trip, I forget about watching my weight and I ate dulce de leche to my heart’s content.
But when I am at home, it’s a different story… My mom once bought a tub of Lactolanda from one of her earlier trips that sat on my kitchen counter for almost 2 years. I am a dulce de leche lover, but I can see the dulce de leche on my kitchen counter and not be hypnotized by it until I finish it all.
But once I a while I do like my sweet fix… Once in a while I crave dulce de leche with a passion. And what do you do when you get a craving and you don’t have a tub of Lactolanda’s dulce de leche waiting in your counter??? You make it yourself…
DULCE DE LECHE
1 can of sweetened condensed milk
Yep… one ingredient.
- All you need to do is fill a pot with water and place the can of condensed milk inside. Make sure the water covers the can completely. Cover the pot and bring the water to a rolling boil.
2. Once the water boils aggressively, you can lower the heat to medium-low with cover still on to keep it boiling but to avoid the water from evaporating all away. Let it boil for 1 hour.
3. After one hour of boiling, carefully flip the can upside down to allow the other side to milk inside to cook evenly. If the water has evaporated that the top of the can is not submerged, add some additional water to the pot. Leave it covered so it starts boiling again fast. Let it boil for another hour.
4. After the second hour has passed. Turn the heat off the stove and leave the can in the water with the pot uncovered.
5. Allow the water to cool off a bit for about 1 extra hour. Carefully, take the can out of the hot water and allow it to cool off some more for about an extra hour or so.
I advise you not to open the can immediately because the condensed milk inside that now is converted to dulce de leche is EXTREMELY HOT and you can certainly burn yourself when the pressure and steam created inside the can shoots out the moment you open the can. It oozes super hot like lava and you don’t want a sugar burn…
After you feel the can is cool enough to handle… open it with a can opener and serve as you please. Some ideas are:
As a dipping sauce for crispas…
Inside a crepe…
Over toast or cookies…
Over ice cream…
Or just take a spoon and eat away… and to be honest, who needs a spoon when you have hands, right???