RSS Feed

Tag Archives: dulce de leche

Caramel Shortbread Bars

caramel shortbread barsI was introduced to the buttery flaky happiness of shortbread cookies last fall, and I promised myself that I would return to them in a new recipe. Instead of baking them in cookie form, I baked these in a pan and then covered them with dulce de leche caramel and a chocolate glaze. They are AMAZINGLY good. Really. That good. Look at the pictures…. they are THAT GOOD.

Caramel Shortbread bars

 

You can make your own dulce de leche using a can of sweetened condensed milk (here’s my recipe for that)- or you can just buy a couple cans of it. I always find it in the Hispanic food section of my local grocery (they have it at WalMart there too). I bought cans for this creation- easy and sooooooo yummy.

Here’s how we made these! (printable recipe here)

INGREDIENTS:

Cookie base:

  • 1 cup unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoons baking powder

Toppings:

  • 2 cans (13.4 oz. each) of dulce de leche I used La Lechera by Nestle
  • 1 cup of dark chocolate chips
  • 6 Tablespoons of butter

DIRECTIONS:

  • Place 1 cup of unsalted butter and powdered sugar into a mixing bowl and using a mixer, beat until light and fluffy (think buttercream frosting…!)
  • Add vanilla and mix until well combined.
  • Add flour and baking powder to butter/sugar mixture and beat on low speed until incorporated well (don’t over-beat this).
  • Press into a standard 9×13″ cake pan that’s been lightly sprayed with cooking spray.
  • Bake at 350F degrees for 12-15 minutes until slightly browned on top and firm at center.
  • Cool completely.
  • Pour cans of caramel over the top and smooth.
  • Melt chocolate chips with 6 Tablespoons of butter. Stir to mix well and pour over top of caramel layer. Smooth top.
  • Before top hardens, if desired, drizzle with white chocolate and pull lines back and forth with a toothpick to make design shown.
  • Chill for at least an hour before cutting.
  • Enjoy!!

Caramel Shortbread

My thoughts: YUM!!!  I love shortbread, I love caramel, and I love chocolate! These are fabulous cookie bars! 🙂 Be sure to use dark chocolate chips to keep the “sweet” factor down. If you want just a touch of caramel, use one can of La Lechera instead of two. I wanted a big layer of caramel in my cookies- but you might want more cookie and less topping. I hope you get a chance to try these!!!  ~Enjoy!!! 

Caramel Shortbreads

Other caramel deliciousness here: (click on a photo to see the recipe)

Inside-out Caramel Apple!!Salted Caramel Cookie Cup!!!Caramel Coconut CupcakesCaramel Gelato5

Advertisements

Tres Leches Layer Cake

Posted on


Tres Leches Cake!!!!

This traditional sponge cake is soaked in a vanilla 3-milk sauce and layered with dulce de leche.  Topped with whipped cream and fresh fruit, it is a light and refreshing dessert.

It’s nearly Cinco de Mayo time!  I first tried Tres Leches cake in Mexico.  I had taken a group from our church down to a tiny village in Sinaloa.  We had spent the week building, painting, doing electrical work and laying cement.  It was my birthday while I was there, and some of the ladies from the church made me a HUGE tres leches cake.  It was DELICIOUS!  When I asked for the recipe, they all looked at me funny and said- it’s tres leches cake..? (like everyone knows how to make that!!!)

Tres Leche Cake in MexicoSince then, I’ve tried this cake at other places in Mexico and in the states.  I’ve noticed that there are two kinds:  The firm, sweet and moist kind, and the dripping with milk kind.  I really don’t like the dripping with milk kind…that consistency is really gross to me- and cake should never be gross!

I researched lots of recipes, and discovered that there are two varieties: a butter based sponge cake and an egg based sponge cake.  The egg based one is the one I liked.  It soaks up all that yummy sauce and stays firm, while the other just sits in a puddle of sauce…YUCK!

Tres Leches Cake!!!!All of that said, this is an egg based recipe that I found on a lovely blog called Pati’s Mexican Table.  My research paid off- this was a FABULOUS cake!  Here’s the recipe: (printable version)

INGREDIENTS

Cake

  • 9 eggs, separated
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups all purpose flour

Vanilla Sauce:

  • 1 (14oz) can sweetened condensed milk (I used La Lechera brand)
  • 1 (12oz) can evaporated milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract

Topping/filling

  • 2 cups heavy whipping cream
  • 1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
  • fresh fruit for garnish
  • 1 (13.4 oz) can of La Lechera Dulce de Leche (or make your own here)

DIRECTIONS:

  • Preheat oven to 360F degrees and spray two 8 or 9 inch cake pans with non-stick spray.  Cut a circle out of parchment paper to place in the bottom of each pan to help these cakes come out of the pan cleanly.
  • Divide eggs into 2 bowls.  Put the egg whites into a large mixing bowl and the yolks into a medium bowl.
  • Beat the egg whites on medium-high until they form soft peaks.  Add sugar and beat on high until they form stiff peaks (this will take 4-5 minutes, depending on your mixer).
  • Beat the egg yolks on high for 5 to 6 minutes until they increase in volume and turn a creamy yellow.
  • Beat the vanilla into the egg yolks until combined.
  • Add the yolks to the whites and use a spatula or large spoon to gently fold them together.
  • Add flour and gently mix until completely combined.
  • Divide batter evenly between the 2 pans and bake for 20-25 minutes.  The tops should be golden and when a toothpick is inserted in the center, it should come out clean.
  • Cool completely, run a small knife around the edges and tip cakes over on a plate.  Remove parchment paper.
  • Make sauce by combining the 3 milks (condensed, evaporated and cream) together with the vanilla.
  • Poke (lots!) of holes in the top of each cake with a fork and carefully pour sauce over the top, dividing it evenly between the 2 cakes.
  • Place one cake on a serving plate, spread dulce de leche caramel over the top, stack second cake on top.
  • Make frosting by beating together the whipping cream and powdered sugar, until stiff peaks form.
  • Frost cake and serve with fresh fruit. Refrigerate until serving.

Tres Leches Cake with caramel and fruitMy thoughts:  I was so pleased with how yummy this cake was.  The sponge cake is very firm and easy to work with, even when it’s soaked with sauce.  You can make this in a 9×13 inch pan too- I just wanted the tall layer cake look~ and that caramel in the middle?  Oh my… take a look at my pictures- it partially soaks in to that bottom layer and gives it a rich caramel flavor.  I think you all are going to love this cake!!  I hope you get a chance to try it!!!  Enjoy!!!!  ~r

Tres Leches Cake!!!!Other cinco de Mayo recipe ideas:

Alfajores-- yummy dulce de leche filling!Confetti Cake Filled with CandyCreamy Mango Pops!Mexican Chocolate Milk

Salty Caramel Cheesecake Bars

Caramel Cheesecake6

Creamy caramel cheesecake over a pretzel crust is topped with a layer of dulce de leche and dark chocolate.  Sweet and salty perfection!

I’ve been craving caramel lately.  Maybe because it’s fall now and caramel seems to be a fall treat.  Whatever the reason, I went on a hunt for caramel cheesecake and found this one at Bon Appetite.  I wanted to add salty to the recipe, so I used a pretzel crust instead of grahams and added dark chocolate.  It is really good.  A subtle caramel flavor with just a hint of salt from the crust.

Caramel Cheesecake5

Want to know how these are made?  Here you go:  (Printable recipe)

INGREDIENTS: (makes 24 cheesecake squares)

Crust:

  • 3 cups of crushed pretzels
  • 2 Tablespoons of sugar
  • 1  stick (1/2 cup) of butter

Cheesecake:

  • 3 packages of cream cheese (8 oz.), softened to room temperature.
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons of vanilla
  • 1 can (13.4 oz) of Nestle La Lechera Dulce de Leche (or 1 cup of your own- find recipe here)

Topping:

  • 1 bag (10 oz.) Nestle Dark Chocolate Morsels.
  • 12 Tablespoons of butter

DIRECTIONS:

  • Preheat oven to 325F degrees.
  • Make crust by combining crushed pretzels, butter and sugar together and pressing into a greased 9×13 pan.
  • Bake at 325F for about 10 minutes.  Cool completely.
  • In a large bowl, cream together sugar with cream cheese.
  • Add eggs, one at a time, beating on low speed between each one.
  • Add vanilla and 1/2 of the can (about 1/2 cup) of Dulce de Leche.
  • Beat on medium until completely combined.
  • Pour cheesecake over cooled crust and bake at 325F for 45 minutes. (Until center is set)
  • Cool at room temperature.
  • Carefully spread remaining Dulce de Leche over the top of the cooled cheesecake.
  • Melt 12 Tablespoons of butter with dark chocolate chips until smooth.
  • Pour over top, carefully spreading chocolate to cover entire cheesecake.
  • Carefully set pretzels on top of chocolate.  Each one will be in the center of one piece when it is cut, so place them according to how big you want your pieces.
  • Lightly sprinkle with coarse salt.
  • Refrigerate overnight.
  • Before serving, allow cheesecake to warm a little and then using a sharp knife, cut into squares with a pretzel centered in each.
  • Enjoy!

Salted Caramel Cheesecake

My thoughts:  These are really so yummy.  My only problem?  The crust was a little crumbly (you can see in the pictures).  I’m almost positive I didn’t get my pretzels chopped fine enough.  Make sure you chop/food process them into FINE bits- not coarse.

If you don’t want a salty crust just use graham crackers– or Oreos…oh my, caramel cheesecake over Oreos?  Yes, please!  The cheesecake is delicious.  It would be good over any crust.  I hope you enjoy trying it!!!  ~r

Salted Caramel Cheesecake!

Other caramel desserts you might enjoy:

Salted Caramel Cookie Cups (2)Inside-out Caramel Apple!!Caramel Fudge Brownies!!Turtle Cheesecake

Alfajores (Peruvian Caramel Cookies)

Posted on

Alfajores- Peruvian Caramel Cookie! These shortbread-like cookies are sandwiched around caramel and topped with chocolate and sugar…yum!

Machu Picchu!

Machu Picchu!

I’m back!  For those of you who follow the comings and goings of Easybaked you know that I spent about 10 days in Peru.  It was a wonderful trip.  I visited my childhood friend Deb in Lima and then the two of us toured Machu Picchu and spent a few days in the Amazon jungle.  The foods were incredible, especially the fresh fruits!  I will add some pictures of our trip at the end….

One of the treats we had in Peru was a cookie called an Alfajore.  The cookie is very subtle- not too sweet- and very dense.  It is served with a caramel filling called Manjarblanco.  I had this filling in a variety of desserts and kept thinking that it tasted like Dulce de Leche.  When I returned home and looked it up I found that it is Dulce de Leche- in a convenient little pouch and ready to eat.

Manjarblanco

Here is my version of this yummy cookie.  If you like things that aren’t overwhelmingly sweet, this is your dessert!

INGREDIENTS:

Cookies (makes about 24 sandwich cookies)

  • 1/2stick (2 oz) butter (softened)
  • 1/4c. sugar
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla
  • a few drops of rum (optional)
  • 2 1/2 c. flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Dulce de Leche:

  •  1 can (14 oz) sweetened condensed milk (or Manjarblanco if you live in an area that offers this!)

DIRECTIONS:

{If you can’t purchase ready-made manjarblanco (dulce de leche), you will need to make your own.  Do this before making your cookies as it takes some time and will need to cool.  My favorite method of making dulce de leche involves boiling cans of sweetened condensed milk, and I have detailed instructions if you click here.}

  • Preheat oven to 350F degrees.
  • Cream together sugar and butter.
  • Add eggs, corn syrup, vanilla and rum.
  • Add flour and baking soda last, and knead dough together with clean hands. (The dough will be dry- a little like play-dough in consistency.  You can add a little water to soften it up if necessary.)
  • Roll dough out to about 1/8 inch thick and cut using a 1 1/2 inch or 2 inch cookie cutter.
  • Place on an un-greased cookie sheet and bake for 8-10 minutes until just turning brown on top.
  • Remove from cookie sheet and cool on a rack.
  • Spread cookies with cooled caramel and sprinkle with powdered sugar/ drizzle with a little chocolate if you like.


Alfajores (Peruvian caramel cookie)!

My thoughts:  I love international recipes.  One of my favorite parts of travel is trying new foods and hearing stories about how those foods fit in with the lives of the people I meet.  These cookies are really good, and available all over in Peru.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!!!

Alfajores
Alfajores-- yummy dulce de leche filling!

A few glimpses at Peru…such a beautiful country full of kind and beautiful people!

Sunrise at Machu Picchu

Sunrise at Machu Picchu

Stairs up Wayana Picchu

Stairs up Wayana Picchu

Beautiful Machu Picchu!!!

Beautiful Machu Picchu!!!

Amazon Village

Amazon Village

Piranha fishing!!

Piranha fishing!!

Jungle hike...baby ferns

Jungle hike…baby ferns

Fresh watermelon in the market at Iquitos

Fresh watermelon in the market at Iquitos

Sloth cuddles :)

Sloth cuddles 🙂

Anaconda!

Anaconda!

Amazon sampler: Jungle pig, Cayman and Paiche (Arapayma)

Amazon sampler: Jungle pig, Cayman and Paiche (Arapayma)

Deb and I - we've been friends since we were two!  Fun trip!!

Deb and I – we’ve been friends since we were two! Fun trip!!

Dulce de Leche Caramel Sauce

This creamy sweet caramel sauce couldn’t be easier to make.  Ingredients?  One can of Sweetened Condensed Milk and a very brave spirit…..

 

I had heard from several people about the “boil a can of condensed milk to make caramel” idea, and I knew someday I would try it.  That “someday” arrived when I was asked to bring a birthday cheesecake for my brother this weekend.  He likes PLAIN cheesecake.  For those of you who have followed easybaked for awhile, you know I don’t do “plain” anything.  I take plain and add peanut butter, chocolate, glazes, ganache, frosting, candy….nothing plain.  But for my wonderful brother John….I present:  a plain white cheesecake…..

so…..plain.  In case you are wondering, this recipe is the basis for almost all of my cheesecakes, and you can click on one of the following pictures to get the recipe using white chocolate (plus fun toppings!!!!) Using other chip flavors gives you chocolate, peanut butter, cinnamon or even butterscotch cheesecakes.

In any case, I made the plain cheesecake, but I wanted a fun topping sauce to serve with it.  Dulce de Leche.  Now, I don’t know about you, but in my mind boiling a can of any sort sounds like a disaster….so I looked up the technique- just to be sure I did it right and didn’t explode anything.

I found a cute blog called Not Without Salt that gave instructions….scary instructions….and I quote:

“In a large pan, completely submerge the can of sweetened condensed milk in water. Make sure it is covered by at least one inch of water and remains covered throughout the entire process – this is VERY important otherwise it could explode. Cover the pan with a lid and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for three hours. Continually check to make sure the can is completely covered with water.”

Yes, it could explode.  Needless to say, I obsessively checked my water level for 3 hours.  I never needed to add any…but I imagined lovely dulce de leche covering my ceiling and walls and I obsessed.

After 3 hours of fear, I took the pan off the stove and had a debate with my friend Danielle about if I should leave it in the hot water to cool…or take it out…?  I took it out.  And I set it outside on my sunporch to cool- or explode.

It cooled beautifully and when I opened the can….oh my.

I love it.  I would do this again in a heartbeat— it is SO good.  I’m so excited to serve it with my cheesecake in a few hours.  It would be good over ice cream or apples…so many possibilities.  ENJOY!!! (and be very careful that your water doesn’t evaporate!!)    ~r

Happy Birthday!!!

Dulce de Leche in your coffee???

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Other recipes you might enjoy: Click on the image to be taken to the recipe.

 

Shop Amazon – Cyber Monday Deals Week

%d bloggers like this: