Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Dulce de Leche Pecan Brownies and an Ice Cream Solution

Have you ever made Dulce de Leche?

This was my first time, too. You can call this post a Dulce de Leche Virgin Liberation Theology Lesson if you like. Or you can be like me and say, "Ah, ah, smart cookie!"

Here's what happened:

1) I droooooled over this recipe by David

2) I had some leftover milk from a kinda bad experiment

3) I didn't want to dirty up a baking dish with condensed milk (eep: industrial food product)

4) I scoured the 'net for a simple recipe, didn't find one I liked, so went with Wikipedia

5) Nearly burned off all the hair on my arms in the process, but after several hours of stirring, stirring, stirring milk, brown sugar, and vanilla extract, I finally had this:

...A little chunkier than what Wikipedia had promised...

6) ...Now, HOURS LATER, it's time to make the brownie batter:

(a) melt chocolate and butter in the oven

(b) blend well and take food porn shots

(c) mix together dry ingredients
Eeeeesh. That's a lot of sugar, David. Are you sure about this?...

(d) add eggs and vanilla extract to melted chocolate-butter, then mix in dry stuff (including these yummy home-toasted pecans)

7) Pour a little brownie batter over the dulce de leche and swirl with a butter knife

8) Pour the rest of the brownie batter over your "marbled" dulce de brownie mess, and pop in oven. Bake, baby, bake...

9) Try to remove from pan - just try! - by pounding, cutting edges with paring knife, sticking in freezer, popping back into warm oven...give it your best shot

10) Salvage what you can, scrape the bottom of the pan with a very stiff spatula, and grab your chai...'cuz it's messy brownie time

Lesson #1: If David says to line the pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil, then you had better line the pan!

Compare mine... David's:
This man knows what he's doing! (photo courtesy of

Lesson #2: If your brownies look like cr*p and, no matter how tasty, are therefore not suitable to feed to colleagues, make Dulce de Leche Pecan Brownie ICE CREAM! The best and final solution to an otherwise sad and arduous baking affair.


...Sorry, it didn't last long enough to get a photo shoot in. But I do have the recipe for you:

- Allow vanilla ice cream to warm on your counter for 5-10 minutes, crumble your crumbly brownies over top, and stir, stir, stir

- Return to freezer, allow to cool for 30-45 minutes, then stir, stir, stir

- You'll have a great NON-industrial food product to serve as a simple dessert after a simple meal (e.g. bean soup, zucchini rounds, and homemade olive foccacia bread) that your friends will mistake for something BandJ dreamed up on their latest Unilever-sponsored galactic-sugar-shroom trip. Yum!

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