I remember as a little girl going downtown with my grandparents to the marketplace in San Antonio. Every time we went my grandma always bought a big piece of Leche Quemada for us to eat. Of course I always picked off the nuts and touched everything with my sticky fingers as she screamed at me not too. Even when I go with them now we always get a big piece and share when I’m in town.
Seeing as how I am no longer in Texas my leche quemada sources are few. Not even the mexican restaurants (or what they call mexican) have them at the register in those little wicker baskets. It’s very sad for me . However we do have one little mexican store here in town that is our go to place for fajita meat and spices. ::Off Topic: Seriously the fajita meat is awesome! The lady cuts a piece of skirt steak into 3 layers (seriously how wicked is that for knife skills) and then puts it through a machine the tenderizes the hell out of it…..THE BEST END OFF TOPIC:: Sadly they only get a few fresh mexican pastries and candies a week and they go fast. So after a little online research and taking the best from the few recipes I could find I gave it a shot.
If you don’t know what leche quemada is it basically translates to burnt milk. I have to say that my attempt was so so. The edges are the perfect fudgy leche quemada I know but the middle is this awesome goey yummyness I just love. I probably should have cooked it a bit longer but there is always next time. As first attempt go I give this a B. Hubs still hasn’t tried it yet but I’m hoping he’ll love it.
1 large cans evaporated milk
2 3/4 cups sugar
2 3/4 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup brown sugar
Fills a bread loaf pan or 6 inch round pan
I also added half the scraped vanilla from a vanilla bean because I thought having a bunch of little black flecks would add to its awesomness. You don’t have to if you don’t want to or if you have a bottle of vanilla bean paste just at 1 tsp.
Make sure you have a big pot that your ingredients come halfway or less up in the pot. I learned this the hard way and had to stop because I completely forgot the bubble explosion that happens when you play with sugar…and you’d think I would remember that being a pastry chef and all.
Toss everything in and put on medium heat…Don’t get lazy and think ooohh I’m just going to put it on high to rush the process because you’ll end up forgetting to stir and burn it and have these chunks of hard caramel in your fudge.
Bring to a boil and stir making sure everything is melting together. If you haven’t already this is about the time I put my candy thermometer in. Your going to go against what you know about playing with sugar and keep stirring. I was always taught you leave it alone so it doesn’t crystalized but you’ll be fine just stir away.
Now it is very very very very very very very important you keep stirring. As the milk and sugars start to carmalize you want to make sure that no chunks of carmal start to form. I did this and have random chunks in mine and while it’s still tasty I would rather have perfection. You want to take it to the softball stage which is 238-240F. You’ll notice it gets much thicker (keep stirring) and you want it to a fudgy type of consistency. Hopefully you’ll have a pan with BUTTERED wax paper waiting. If not do as I did and yell at significant other while you’re stirring like a mad woman/man. It’s very very important you grease the wax paper because it will stick….as I learned this morning.
Let it cool for a few minutes after pouring and top with some nuts if you so should desire. Then let it cool some more…an hour I would say at least.
Make sure your knife is hot when you cut it up and enjoy! Can you see just how awesome and gooey this baby is! Can’t wait to hear how your tries went and if you enjoy it as much as I do.
*Update 7/1/2011- The longer you let it sit the harder it gets. So if your looking for the type of leche quemada you find at mexican restaurants let it sit for 2 days and it will be dense like the candies you find there.