Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Dulce de Leche in a Crockpot


If you know anything about making dulce de leche, the sweet caramel like, milk based sauce, which I'm told is popular in Latin America, then the picture above might frighten you just a little. You might even be conjuring up images of exploding cans, and hot caramel on the kitchen ceiling. Not a pretty picture when combined with my six children, who spend a great deal of time in the kitchen.

For those of you who don't know about making dulce de leche from a can of sweetened condensed milk, then let me fill you in on what all the terror is about. Apparently, one popular method of turning ordinary sweetened condensed milk, into a can of caramel delight, is to plop it into a pan of water, bring it to a boil, and then let it simmer for 4 hours. Once the can cools, it can be opened, whereupon the magical transformation can be viewed, and enjoyed.

The only problem is, that if the can is not completely submerged the entire time, or if it is opened while bulging and hot, it could explode. As you might imagine, it's not recommended by manufacturers of sweetened condensed milk. Even so, I had a can of the stuff just sitting there on my pantry shelf, begging to be turned into something better. What could I do?

Use a can opener (and a crock pot), of course!

I have no idea where I found this recipe. It was in a comment on a site, of one of those kitchen daredevils, who had actually risked life and limb, for a smooth, creamy, bit of caramel sauce (see this post from Not So Humble Pie). But the instructions were pretty simple, and low maintenance - another important factor for me, when considering the six children.

Open, a can of sweetened condensed milk. Pour it into a crock pot.

Cook on low heat, for 5 - 7 hours, stirring about every 45 minutes. Here's mine after one hour...



...two hours...


...three hours...


...four hours...


...and five hours.



I wasn't too impressed when I tasted it warm. It still had a lot of condensed milk flavor. But, after it had cooled...wow! It took all the will power I could muster, not to eat the entire batch while the children were down for their nap.

It's great to be a homeschooler.

4 comments:

Raising a Happy Child said...

I remember doing it when I was a child (not in a crockpot). Sweet... in every sense of the word. By the way, I like your new picture in the title - so funny and also sweet.

Butterfly said...

Ooh la la! Save some, I'm on my way over!

This reminds me I have all those winter desserts to try out again, when our Aussie winter comes ... semolina pudding, sago, tapioca, rice pudding ... all with that adorable ingredient: condensed milk.

Ticia said...

I better not let Jeff see this post, he's a big Dulce de Leche fan.

Adriana said...

Yum! We love dulce de leche but I have never made it myself. We will have to try it!