Mmmm, I love caramel. I REALLY love caramel. Yet I’ve never made Dulce de Leche. And I have no idea why really. It’s super easy. And there’s a variety of different ways to do it.
Many moons ago I gave one method a go. I put a tin of Highlander Condensed Milk into a pot and I let it boil several hours.
But I actually didn’t like the flavour. It was too intense but not with a real caramel flavour that I’ve enjoyed in many baked slices before.
Tan Square and Skites (a family favourite I remember making time and time again as a youngster) are just two recipes that have the sort of caramel flavour I use as my gauge on other baked goods.
I made my Dulce de Leche using a method Davide Lebovitz describes on his blog. Here’s the link.
Other methods are taking the label off, putting it in a slow cooker with the tin covered in water and leaving it for 8 hours.
Or you could make it from scratch. I came across this YouTube clip last night showing that method.
And then of course you can buy a tin of “Caramel” from the supermarket. There’s nothing to say this is Dulce de Leche. But given you just boil a tin of Condensed Milk I’m a little puzzled by the lack of name. Perhaps you can only call it DLD if you use a particular method and maybe when you mass produce you don’t follow those standards. I don’t know.
Anyway, all that aside, here’s a few photos of what I started with, and what I ended up with.
Pour the hot water into the roasting pan when you’ve got the pan in the oven. I quickly realised that would be the smarter way to proceed after I’d poured the water into the pan while it was on the bench, then I tentatively walked 4 or so paces with the full swirling boiled water to the oven.
At 40 minutes I checked the water level and needed to pour more in. You will actually see the water boiling in the pan during the cooking.
I ended up leaving mine in for the 75 minutes.
Here’s what it looked like coming out. It’s certainly more caramel coloured but it’s not close to what the pictures are I’ve seen online, and on David Lebovitz’s website.
You can tell the condensed milk boiled since there’s little bubbles here.
I let it cool completely (obviously I took the dish out of the roasting pan) before I whisked this. And the whisk was struggling to move through this, but I still don’t think it’s as thick as photos I’ve seen of this either.
I’m quite fond of these jars. They are from Rose’s Marmalade. My favourite is Sweet Orange. The detail in the glass is quite pretty and it’s an unusual shape.
So here we are. The finished product ready to be used. And I licked the spatula (of course!) and it tasted ok. Not too sweet, thanks to adding a little sea salt. Still not quite the same as the caramel I have loved for many many years (it has golden syrup, butter and brown sugar in it) but I’m sure everyone who tastes it will be happy enough and I’m very much looking forward to trying it.