This is my favorite version of Dulce de Leche or Milk Dessert. It's Curdle Dulce de Leche! And to those that are not used to it, it may sound a little bit funny because the milk is purposely curdle until is grainy. But that's the point. Trust me, it is delicious. Every time we went to visit my grandmother Tatá in Urica, her hometown in Venezuela, she would receive us with all kinds of sweets like Dulce de Lechoza (Papaya), Dulce de Merey (Cashew fruit) and specially curdle Dulce de Leche. She used fresh milk from Papa Renco's cows and "Papelón" or solidified sugar cane molasses to sweeten. This is my version of that memory. This is also a labor of love, the total cooking time will be about 2 to 3 hours so be sure you have time for it.
- 12 cups whole milk
- 1 cup whipping cream
- 2 1/2 cups Brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon molasses
- You can substitute the sugar and molasses for 1 pound (about 1/2 kilogram) Papelón or Piloncillo, finely grounded
- peels from 3 limes, use the potato peeler to get big pieces
- juice of 1 lime
In a big nonreactive pan mix the milk, cream, brown sugar and molasses. Cook in a medium heat for about 45 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the lime peels and lime juice, this will almost immediately curdle the milk, continue stirring so the milk lumps are not too big. Lower the heat to medium-low and continue cooking and stirring once in a while so the milk won't stick to the bottom, for about 1 1/2 more hours or more if there is still too much liquid. But keep in mind that here should be some liquid left, this will evaporate while the sweet is cooling. Cool completely before refrigerating. You can either remove or leave the lemon peels, but some people like to eat them so I usually leave them. This recipe makes about 4 cups of Dulce de leche.
I know it sounds complicated, so if you have any questions or you want me to clarify any step, please ask me. Thanks to Tatá, Tia Naty and Mamá Marisela for all the tips and recommendations that evolved into this recipe.