Tag Archives: condensed milk

Pumpkin Almond Oatmeal

27 Nov

Some of you may still have a few leftovers from Thanksgiving… some pureed pumpkin, some condensed milk from making pie or even a tres leches cake. Wink, wink…

Well, that was my predicament about this same time last year – left over pumpkin and condensed milk from making a few batches of my Pumpkin 4 Leches Cake.  I was not let them go to waste… so here’s how to partly clean your fridge from those Thanksgiving leftover ingredients.

Oatmeal made with pumpkin puree and sweet condensed milk.

PUMPKIN ALMOND OATMEAL

¾ cup condensed milk

¾ cups water

¼ cup pumpkin puree

1/3 cup quick-cooking oatmeal

½ tsp vanilla powder

¼ tsp freshly ground nutmeg

½ tsp ground cinnamon

Pinch of Salt

¼ cup slivered almonds, toasted

 

  1. In a medium sauce pan over medium heat add the condensed milk, water and pumpkin puree.  Whisk well to combine and dissolve the pumpkin into the milk.  Season with vanilla powder, nutmeg, cinnamon and salt .  Mix together to combine well.   Immediately after, add the oatmeal.  Mix well again and partially cover the saucepan allowing an opening for you to see the milk and how it’s coming to temperature.
  2. When the milk starts to boil, in about 2-3 minutes, stir everything to combine and allow all the boiling to subside a bit.  Lower the temperature of the stove to low and continue to cook partially covered.
  3. After about 5-6 minutes of cooking, you’ll see the oatmeal starts to thicken a bit, but not quite done yet.  I cover completely.  Count to 10 and turn off the stove.  Turn it off and walk away.  Don’t look, don’t peek… just walk away.
  4. After about 15 minutes of letting the oatmeal stand, it’s done.  I usually let it stand for about 30 minutes to allow it to be a tad cooler.
  5. Add the toasted almonds over the top to garnish as you’re serving it.

 

Tip:  You can also used pureed sweet potato for this recipe… or use 1 ½ cups almond milk instead of the condensed milk + water mixture, but then add 1 tbs brown sugar to sweeten the oatmeal.

Oatmeal made with pumpkin puree, sweet condensed milk and spices.

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Pumpkin Tres Leches or is it Cuatro Leches???

17 Nov

This recipe is the first one I made for the Spanish Recipe portal Qué Rica Vida to celebrate Fall and Thanksgiving season.

I have been meaning to develop a recipe for a Pumpkin Tres Leches for several years now.  After few failed attempts, I knew I needed to come up with a new recipe.  A cake that would soak up all the milks like a sponge…  a SPONGE!!!!  That was the key!!!  I needed to develop a sponge cake recipe without using eggs.

Chia Seeds were the key… they worked even better than my usual and trusted egg-replacer.  Chia seeds, as I have shared previously, are full of protein, omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, anti-oxidants and even calcium.  And they work perfectly to substitute eggs in recipes because they gelatinize when they come in contact with liquids so they rise the batter they’re added to.

And why call it a Pumpkin Cuatro Leches, or 4 milks, instead of the usual Tres Leches?  Because traditional Tres Leches cakes are soaked in a mixture of fresh milk, evaporated milk and condensed milk but have a meringue topping.  Our version still is filled with the sweet flavors of the traditional 3 milks, but used a whipped cream topping, making the heavy cream the 4th milk in the recipe.

I tested and tested this recipe and it now has a following among the taste testers… hope you also join the group.

Pumpkin Cuatro Leches Cake

PUMPKIN CUATRO LECHES CAKE

1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
½ cup brown sugar
1 ½ tsp baking powder
2 tsp chia seeds
2 tbs butter, melted
2/3 cups milk, I use 2%
1/3 cup fresh pumpkin, steamed and mashed
½ tsp vanilla powder
½ tsp ground cinnamon
¼ tsp salt
½ tsp freshly ground nutmeg

In addition:

6 oz fresh 2% milk
6 oz evaporated milk
6oz sweetened condensed milk

For the topping:

1 cup heavy whipping cream
3 tbs condensed milk
1 tsp vanilla powder
½ tsp grown cinnamon, to decorate

It seems like a lot of ingredients… but it’s a really easy recipe to make.  I use a rectangular baking dish 8” x 6” x 2” or a round 8” cake pan.  And I also make this recipe in my toaster oven.  I believe this recipe is co chuck full of flavor and sweetness that a little bit goes a long way.  Although I do know a few that could easily eat a whole Pumpkin Cuatro Leches cake in one sitting… no problem, you all shall remain nameless.

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350F.
  2. Butter the baking pan in which you’ll make this.  This will be the same pan in which you’ll serve it.  After greasing pan, set it aside.
  3. In a large bowl, mix all the dry ingredients – flour, sugar, baking powder and the chia seeds.  Whisk them well to make sure there are no lumps of flour or brown sugar in the mix.
  4. In a measuring cup measure and add the milk, melted butter and mashed pumpkin.  Mix it well to create a homogeneous mixture.
  5. Add it to the dry ingredients and whisk together until all ingredients are well incorporated.
  6. Season mixture with salt, vanilla powder and spices.
  7. Pour the mixture in the prepared greased pan.  It may seem like little batter for the size of the pan, but remember we’ll be adding later on 18 ounces of milks and they need a place to go.
  8. Bake in oven for 20 minutes until the cake has risen and it’s golden on top.  After 20 minutes have elapsed, turn the oven off but do not take the cake out.  Not even open the oven door!! Wait about 40 additional minutes for the cake to complete cooking with the residual heat already in the oven.  There’s nothing to see… but your patience will be rewarded.
  9. After those additional 40 minutes have elapsed, take the cake out of the oven and rest it on a cooling rack so it cools completely.
  10. When it’s completely cooled, pierce it using a toothpick, a skewer or even a fork.  The idea is to make perforations so the milks can seep and soak the cake all from the inside.  It will not matter if the cake looks kinda ugly, because later on we’ll cover all that with whipped cream.  No one will see this but you…
  11. Mix the 3 milks in equal parts in a large measuring cup or a small pitcher.  It helps that the vessel you use has a spout so it’ll be easier to pour over the cooled cake.
  12. Pour half of the milks’ mixture over the pierced cooled cake.  You’ll probably not be able to pour more because the milks might overflow the cake pan.  That’s not a problem… just wait out a few hours for that first half to be absorbed and then you’ll be able to pour in the remaining milks.
  13. If the temperature where you live is cool, you can leave the cake soaking over your kitchen counter at room temperature.  If it’s too warm, you can cover the cake and place in the fridge over night while the milks are absorbed by the cake.
  14. The next day, pour 1 cup of heavy whipping cream in a large bowl and whip using an electric hand mixer.  Make sure the heavy cream is cold and start at a low speed and increase speeds slowly.  When bubbles start to form, add the condensed milk and the vanilla.  Continue whipping until soft peaks form.
  15. With an offset spatula, spread the whipped cream over the cake, which should have absorbed all the milks by now.  Decorate with a light sprinkle of grown cinnamon using a very fine sieve.

3 Leches for Tres Leches Cake

If you want to double this recipe, you certainly can… and you can use a 9” x 13” baking dish.  By going larger on the pan, you’ll probably need a larger oven and to increase the cooking time to 30 minutes and allow the cake to rest inside the hot oven for an additional 30 minutes, for a total 1 hour in the oven.  For the 3 milk mixture you can just mix a can of evaporated milk a can of condensed milk and the same amount of one of those cans of fresh milk.  With that, you’ll have the perfect amount of milk to soak your cake.

I prefer to use evaporated and condensed milks that come in UHT packaging instead of cans, but I understand they’re difficult to come by.  So if you can find them near you, by all means use them.  Just make sure you have equal amounts of milks and the total amount should be between 18 and 20 ounces of liquid to soak the cake well.

Pumpkin Cuatro Leches Cake

Dulce de Leche

25 Jun

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.

  1. 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???

Coquito 2

10 Dec

I am a coquito FANATIC!!! Every year I make a few batches of my non-alcoholic version of Coquito. Xmas would just not be the same without it.

But I have to admit my original recipe has evolved a bit. I wanted it to be a bit sweeter and creamier so I started adding Cream of Coconut to the recipe to maintain the coconut essence without adding sugar directly into the mix.

Cream of Coconut is what we traditionally use to make Piña Coladas and the best brand is Coco López. Even if other brands might be on sale, I prefer to buy Coco López. I do read the labels once in a while to make sure no super weird ingredients have been added to it.

This newer version is still non-alcoholic, something my friends with little kids appreciate, but know it has an even creamier feel to it.  Salud!!

COQUITO 2

3 cups of water
5 cinnamon sticks (I usually use a whole bagful)
4 tbs cloves (I usually use a whole bagful)
4 tbs anise seeds (I usually use a whole bagful)
2 tbs star anise (I usually use ½ bagful)
1 can of sweetened condensed milk
1 can of coconut milk
1 can of cream of coconut
1 can of evaporated milk
2 tbs ground ginger
1 tbs ground cinnamon
2 tbs vanilla extract or vanilla powder
1 tbs freshly ground nutmeg

 

  1. In a medium saucepan create a “spiced tea” – pour the 3 cups of water, cinnamon sticks, anise seeds, star anise and cloves. Steep for about 15-20 minutes to create a strong spiced tea. This will give the coquito most of its spiciness. Let cool a bit.
  2. In a blender, mix together the evaporated milk, condensed milk, coconut milk and cream of coconut with 2 ”cans-worth” of the spiced tea, ground ginger, nutmeg and the vanilla powder.
  3. Pour into a clean bottle and chill in the refrigerator.
  4. Serve chilled in small shot glasses. Sprinkle with ground cinnamon.

Coquito – The Perfect Holiday Drink

14 Dec

Coquito is the Puerto Rican ultimate holiday drink.

It’s served in a small glass, like a shot glass or jigger, but it’s sipped slowly. It’s never meant to be a shot. This is the Puerto Rican version of an eggnog. There are many versions out there – with raw eggs, with rum, with “cañita rum”, however, my version is the Vegetarian way – the spice and warmth comes from the ginger, anise seeds, star anise and cinnamon. The only way to know this does not contain alcohol is because you’ll not get drunk… because it still has a nice kick. And the nice thing, you don’t need to do a kiddie version.

 p1020013.jpg

COQUITO

1 can condensed milk
1 carton evaporated milk
1 can coconut milk
3 cups of water
4 inch piece of fresh ginger
5 sticks of cinnamon
4 tablespoons anise seeds
4 tablespoons star anise
2 tablespoons whole cloves
2 tablespoons ground nutmeg
1 vanilla pod
1/2 teaspoon vanilla powder or alcohol-free vanilla extract
ground cinnamon to taste

p1020006.jpg

  1. In a medium saucepan create a “spiced tea” – pour the 3 cups of water, ginger, cinnamon sticks, anise seeds, star anise, nutmeg and cloves. Scrape the seeds inside the vanilla pod and add to “tea water”. Throw in the vanilla pod too.
  2. p1020003.jpg

  3. Steep for about 15-20 minutes to create a strong spiced tea. This will give the coquito most of its spiciness. Let cool a bit.
  4. In a blender, mix together all the milks with 2 “cans-worth” of the “spiced tea” and the vanilla powder.
  5. Pour into a clean bottle and chill in the refrigerator.
  6. Serve chilled in small shot glasses.  Sprinkle with ground cinnamon.

Salud, Dinero y Amor!!!!!

I try to avoid buying anything canned, but unfortunately condensed milk is something that ONLY comes in a can. The same happens with coconut milk. If you can make your own coconut milk, I highly recommend it. But, I am a working vegetarian woman and I do not have the time to do it.

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