Thursday, March 18, 2010
Dulce de Leche
Dulce de leche is one of those things that inspires rapture when mentioned. It's a sweet milky caramel that is typically made by some manner of boiling an unopened or pierced can of sweetened condensed milk for hours. It has to be watched carefully for if the water evaporates, the can can explode and spray sticky caramel all over your kitchen.
Google. Sure enough, Alton Brown has a recipe for dulce de leche, and it doesn't involve cans of exploding sugary milk.
Homemade Dulce de Leche - adapted from Alton Brown
1 quart whole milk
1 1/2 cups (12 ounces) granulated sugar
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
Combine the whole milk, sugar and vanilla bean in a 4 quart saucepan over medium heat. When the sugar melts and the mixture starts to boil, add the baking soda and lower the heat to low until the mixture is barely simmering. Cook for an hour, stirring occasionally (don't try to incorporate the foam that forms on the top of the milk). Remove the vanilla bean and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is a deep caramel color and has reduced to about 1 cup, about 1 1/2 - 2 hours. Pour through a fine mesh strainer into a measuring cup or clean container, cover and refrigerate for up to one month.