Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Dulce De Leche...a bitter or a sweet affair?

Posted by Quinn at Wednesday, June 16, 2010

As I am typing this, I am sitting next to a freak, a soccer freak that yelled non-stop...words like Offside, Foul, Walao!!! kept popping nonstop through out the 90 minutes. "I think [insert any team that is his favourite] will win, I support them"..... There you go and you get the idea.... it surprises me how much I can do for him and how willing I am. I don't like football really but for him, I learn so much in 3 days, what is offside, how foul works, referees and linesmen and so forth.... And little did I know, I grew to love football even more everyday... It gets pretty boring watching alone so I wanna be there for him and complete with enough layerings for winter and cold beer, we are good to go.

Unfortunately, in a relationship, it is never fair and there is no such thing as payback. I don't remember a time he accompanied me bake something in the kitchen. The only time he did it was an American Carrot Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting for my birthday. Hell yeah, it was very edible! He even made his own stencil and place it over the cake and dusted cocoa powder over it.

The problem is, the cake was warm and he slathered a good cream cheese frosting over a warm cake. And dusted cocoa powder over it with stencil. When the whole thing reaches me, it was nothing more than a pile of mush, ugly but very very sweet. It was an 'awwwww....' at the first mouhthful he fed me. It was an even better 'awwww....' at the second bite where he pull me close to his shoulder pecked me on my forehead and whispered 'Happy Birthday Sweetheart' into my left ear. Rest is history.

I hate Aaron. He doesn't remember all these stuffs really. He is just your typical average guy...he doesn't even know I am upset with him now. You see, the problem all started with nothing more than a can of condensed milk that soon ended up being turned into a can of Dulce De Leche, magically like how a frog can become a prince.

It was all fine, I made the Dulce De Leche yesterday while we watched both matches and stayed in the dining room for long hours. Good time really to make something so time consuming that needs constant checking (not really, I'll show you my way later). So I left it to cool overnight and wanted to have all the excitement and rubbings of hands in glee as we go through my journey of making Dulce De Leche and popping open that can. And we have 2 cameras. Remember the one that Aaron got me? The problem is, if given a choice and he is not using it, I prefer to use his camera, simply because it is a better point-and-shoot. Better resolution, you can adjust the exposure and shutter speed and etc.... but with mine you can't. It's better off for something you would wanna bring along for a long vacation, cheap but very practical.

So what happen was, when I pull out his camera, I realised the battery died on me. I spent a good 45 minutes hunting for the charger and still not able to find it. It was not until I got into his room that I realise the basket of shirts that I've nicely washed, ironed and folded for him are all still in the laundry basket. He practically never even unpack his luggage ever since coming back from Perth. See, that's another problem because I have issues with being neat, tidy and very very clean, and he knows it.

I hate how he doesn't appreciate my effort in doing things and cleaning his room entirely for him just so he comes home to a sweet home and be very comfortable. I hate how he always stress to me to put things in its original position so we could easily know where to find things later on and he is not doing so. I hate how he squeeze such a pathetic dollop of toothpaste onto his toothbrush and insisted it's enough when even my neighbour's 5-years-old boy know it is an insufficient amount. I hate it when he took off his shirt to go to bed just because he doesn't like sleeping in shirts because he felt like something is pulling on him every time he makes a turn and he ended up getting blocked and stuffy nose the next morning. I hate how stubborn he is. I hate how he never listens to me.

I know...I sound so demanding... I hate to have to get upset with him over the fact that I can't take good photos but you see, that is secondary. The primary one is he doesn't know I am upset and doesn't put things where they should be. You're probably wondering how can I praise my man from head to toe and the very next minute, bring him down to hell. Talk about birthday cake, Aaron is my heaven and also my hell! Anyway, the charger is now found and the lighting now is bad because it's getting late and because I cannot wait till tomorrow to share and pop the can with you and because I already dug my spoon in it and am in heaven.

He is still one happy man and he doesn't know I am mad and I'm no longer mad anymore anyway now that the sweet Dulce De Leche make up for his bitter unintentional mistakes. So Dulce De Leche, it's easy. One ingredient is all you need and that is a can of sweetened condensed milk. I am a bit risky, I do what all olden days mothers would do, heating the condensed milk in its can, and it's a pull-ring can! Also note that it's sweetened condensed milk. Do not use unsweetened condensed milk because in some parts of the world, unsweetened condensed milk is the same as evaporated milk.

For those who said you've never seen Nestle having a pull-ring can (there is this dude in the forum that really lives out in the sticks!), yes they do exist here Down Under. And the label clearly says ' Caution: Do not heat in can'. Anyway, I went ahead and do it. I don't wanna encourage anyone to do it but yeah...I still live to tell you the story.

Simply bring a very deep pot with heavy lid filled with water and drop that can in there. Make sure you remove the paper label from the can else you get a pile of mushy paper fit for recycle centre. Make sure your water is 2 inches high from the top of the can and you will never need to refill and add more water. Place over the glass lid and crank up the heat. It took a good 15 minutes for my water to boil. Lower the heat to barely simmering, the lowest your stove can get and go watch your football, though I did open up the lid and check every hour or so. I did mine for 4 hours or maybe 4.5 hours but feel free to stop at say 3 hours.

Just remember that the longer you simmer them, the more viscous it gets and you can thin them down with milk or even water later on if you find them too thick to your liking. The first picture in this post is thinned down with a splash of milk and coated on a spoon with a drizzle of good pink salt so I can just eat them like lollipop. Yes, that's my teeth mark! My glass lid has one small hole that allows steam to escape at a slow rate. I cannot stress enough to you that the very moment the water is not covering the can, the whole thing will explode and you get Dulce De Leche all over your kitchen walls and ceiling, it is so gooey and messy it is not funny.

I was so excited when I pull the ring just like that and a lil brownish stuffs showed a little through the yet-to-be-opened-lid. It excites me and to know if this stuff works is just a pull away!!!

When time is up, turn off the heat and place the whole pot of water under running tap water to bring down the temperature gradually. If you take them out directly and attempt to open it, there is a chance it might explode and you'll ruin your pretty face for life. The can might look like it bulged a little simply because it is pressurised but never mind that. Dry the can and place it on your kitchen counter and let it sit overnight.

The next day, open up that can and at first it will look like it is separated and that water seeps in. Give it a very good stir and soon, everything will give way and what you get is a luscious, thick, creamy, goeey, sweet and easy Dulce De Leche. There you have it, homemade Dulce De Leche for a million use, to drizzle over unsweetened ice cream, to make cheesecake with it, to top your fruits and to make Banoffee Pie. Endless way to use it and because of its high sugar content, it will last for a while in your fridge so make good use of it.

Comments disallowed for this post. Any questions regarding Dulce De Leche, please email me. No, I am fine. Really. Words of comfort will be entertained but any words on how to maintain a relationship and how to be patient with your partner/spouse and yada yada... will absolutely not be tolerated. I know Aaron better, trust me and don't judge us, pretty please. Thanks.

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