Sooo, happy equinox!
Yup, it’s fall!
I know it’s such a common thing to say but I love fall…beautiful sun filled days, cooler nights, sweaters and boots, yummy food, harvest…
What’s not to love?
So, I took out my crock pot (which is such a “fall” thing to do!) and thought about making something in it.
But, where I live, the weather is still pretty summer-like so I’m not yet ready to make stew and chicken pot pie. I kinda want to make ice cream still. But I want to use the crock pot.
Wait! I just had a thought! I remember that my friend Pat made this incredible ice cream and used dulce de leche to make it. I’ve experimented with dulce de leche before (remember this post where I made dulce de leche from regular milk?) but I’m not sure I want to spend 20 hours stirring and watching over a pot. Plus, what do I do with all of it when it’s done?
I’ve made dulce de leche from condensed milk before (where you just throw the whole tin of condensed milk in a pan full of water and cook it for 4 hours) but it kinda freaked me out thinking that the tin is boiling along with the milk. I’m sure I wouldn’t grow another arm if I ate it (actually I know I wouldn’t because I ate the whole thing and I still only have 2 arms), but I still figured there had to be a better way.
What if I just dumped a bunch of condensed milk right in the crock pot and cooked it? But then I had a thought…if I put the condensed milk into canning jars and cooked it in the crock pot on low, would it turn into dulce de leche AND seal the jars?
Well, guess what people?
It totally worked!!! Although, a small caveat here…I found out from a canning instructor at a local college that condensed milk isn’t acidic enough to keep at room temperature – even though the jars have sealed. So, because of this, you are better off to keep them in the fridge where they will keep for over a month!
I came away with 6 jars of this luscious stuff…and sooo many ways to use it (see below). And, to make the process even better, it took almost zero effort and left me with 6 jars that I can enjoy or give away as gifts!!
I can’t even…
What you’ll need:
4- 300 ml cans condensed milk
6 glass canning jars (I used these that hold about 1 cup each)
A crock pot
Make sure your jars are sterilized (just put them in your dishwasher) and wipe down the outside of the cans (you never know where they were stored and what critters were climbing all over them!!)
Pour the milk into the jars, leaving about 1″ at the top of each jar and put the lids back on (you don’t need to screw the lid really tight…you just need to make sure the glass rim is completely clean or else the seal won’t take).
Cook them in the crock pot for about 8 hours on low (I literally did this when I was cleaning the kitchen at night, turned on the crock pot and they were ready the next morning!!)
Look at how beeeautiful they are! Jars of gold!!
I did another batch and cooked them for 7 hours thinking it might be more pourable but it was just lighter in colour. Who cares…it was still spectacular!!
It is so creamy and when I scooped it out, my mind started racing…what was I going to make with this stuff??
I had some pie dough so I make some mini dulce de leche pop tarts on a stick…
Sooo cute, right??
Then I made hasselback apples (like hasselback potatoes but with apples…and if you don’t know what hasselback is, it just means they are sliced thinly but not all the way through and baked!!), I rolled out the pastry, put a layer of dulce de leche on the bottom and topped it with the sliced apples separating each slice with sliced almond.
What would you make with your dulce de leche?
‘Cause you know you’re going to make it right?!?!?