Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Dulce de Leche Gelato and Caramel Banana Bread "Brioche"

I saw this recipe on making your own dulce de leche- it's like magic! You start out with a can of sweetened condensed milk, and voila, after 3 hours, it's can of heavenly dulce de leche.

So, Dulce de leche = milk caramel. The slow simmering of sugar and milk causes caramelization, evaporation of excess water, and the Maillard reaction. What this all means is one delicious can of goodness. I made my dulce de leche the old fashioned way, by cooking it in the can directly. To lessen the chance of an explosion, I used my can opener to puncture 2 small holes in the can.

Make-your-own-Dulce de Leche

- 1 x 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk (larger sized can may require longer cooking time)
- 1 pot of hot water

  1. Using a can opener, make 2 small holes in the top of the can. No need to pull the lid back.
  2. Place in pot of simmering water on medium, maintain water level at 3/4 height of can. Check periodically to refill water as needed.
  3. Simmer for 3 hours.
  4. Open can, marvel in amazement at deliciousness, and lick fingers. Don't burn your tongue.

Dulce de Leche Gelato

- 1 x can of Dulce de leche from above (reserve small amount for creating ribbons)
- 2 cups whole milk (reserve small amount for dissolving corn starch)
- 1/2 cup cream
- vanilla bean from 1 pod
- 1.5 Tbsp corn starch

  1. Add milk, cream and vanilla bean together.
  2. Bring to a boil.
  3. Dissolve corn starch in reserve amount of milk, and add to milk mixture.
  4. Remove from heat, whisk in dulce de leche. Reserve some of the dulce de leche for creating "ribbons" in the gelato.
  5. Chill overnight in refrigerator.
  6. Add into gelato machine in the morning.
  7. Add reserved dulce de leche while making gelato to create ribbons therein.

Banana Bread "Brioche"

This isn't really a brioche; rather, it's a standard banana bread recipe, but baked in brioche tins. I liked the shape and size of the brioche tins, and thought a hearty banana bread would go well with caramel flavors.

Recipe adapted from "Aunt Holly's" Banana Bread on Epicurious:

- 7-8 ripe bananas
- 1/2 cup melted butter
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 3 cups flour
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 2 eggs beaten
- 2 tsp baking soda

  1. Mash bananas.
  2. Add remaining ingredients.
  3. Bake in brioche tins and/or loaf pans.
  4. Serve banana bread "brioche" with quenelle of dulce de leche gelato, and drizzle ensemble with caramel.
  5. Add toasted walnuts.

Not my best plating, the quenelle of gelato looks like a fat slug, haha.


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