Dulce de Leche

Always a big fan of the uber-talented David Lebovitz, I knew as soon as I read about these brownies I’d have to make them.  Typically I look at a recipe, via a photo of the finished product, before I attempt to make it, but in this case, is was the ingredients that caught my eye.

The Dulce de Leche (see recipe here) is basically caramelized sweetened condensed milk.  While available in the store, it’s so easy to make at home (and much cheaper), I’m not quite sure why anyone would actually buy this stuff instead of making it themselves.

Dulce de Leche Brownies

8 tbsp butter, cut into tbsp-size pieces
6 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1/4 cup (0.75oz) unsweetened Dutch-process cocoa powder
3 eggs
1 cup (7oz) sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup (5oz) flour
1 cup (3.5oz) toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped
1 cup Dulce de Leche

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Line the baking pan with two sheets of foil placed perpendicular, with the edges overhanging the sides, so that they make a cross.  These will be used as handles to lift the brownies out of the pan.  Spray foil-lined pan with cooking spray.
  3. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan. Add the chocolate pieces and stir constantly over very low heat until the chocolate is melted. Remove from heat and whisk in the cocoa powder until smooth. Add in the eggs one at a time, then stir in the sugar, vanilla, then the flour. Mix in the nuts.
  4. Scrape half of the batter into the prepared pan.
  5. Drop one-third of the Dulce de Leche, evenly spaced, over the brownie batter, then drag a knife through to swirl it slightly.
  6. Spread the remaining brownie batter over, then drop spoonfuls of the remaining Dulce de Leche in dollops over the top of the brownie batter. Use a knife to swirl the Dulce de Leche slightly.
  7. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes. The brownies are done when the center feels just-slightly firm. Remove from the oven and cool completely.

Storage:These brownies actually become better the second day, and will keep well for up to 3 days.

Makes 12 brownies

Source: http://www.davidlebovitz.com/archives/2006/06/dulce_de_leche.html

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Peanut Butter Dulce de Leche Chocolate Cheesecake

Peanut Butter Dulce de Leche Chocolate Cheesecake

So the Dulce de Leche I made recently kept taunting me every time I opened the refrigerator, just daring me to open a jar, get a spoon, and start eating.  My will power, surprisingly enough, held that idea in check, but I knew it was only a matter of time, so I figured I outta do something with Dulce de Leche.

There’s no shortage of yummy things to make with Dulce de Leche, but when the Kuhn Rikon Push Pan I’d ordered arrived, I knew it had to be a cheesecake.  The Kuhn Rikon Push Pan has a silicon ring at the base which claims to eliminate the need wrap the pan in double foil when using a water bath.

The Dulce de Leche isn’t a super strong flavor, so I jacked up the flavor with some peanut butter, and topped the cheesecake with a chocolate ganache, as peanut butter/Dulce de Leche and chocolate are like the yin and yang of sweets.  With the sweetness of the Dulce de Leche and the peanut butter, I was able to tune back the amount of sugar typically used in a cheesecake. [continued after the jump...]

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