I had this boyfriend once who went to Argentina, and the thing he brought me back was dulce de leche, a kind of caramel made out of milk. The boyfriend was impermanent and will probably die cold and alone, but my relationship with caramel lives on, warm and fulfilling. I am better suited to food relationships than human ones – I think this as I look over at Nick splayed on the couch watching hockey in his underwear, picking food out of his teeth, belching under his breath in that way that he thinks he does subtly, which I think he thinks I can’t hear. Anyway. Dulce de leche is a beautiful thing, and I want very much to go to Argentina where they certainly must bathe in it. I would if I had a steady supply.
I’m still feeling cruddy, but my fever’s gone down some and I haven’t done anything unseemly in a few hours. But I can’t be bothered to chew yet, and I didn’t think it was worth the risk to upset my delicate constitution – the beast in my belly is sensitive and cruel. That, and I really wanted pudding. I love pudding. And David Lebovitz has this recipe for dulce de leche that calls for exactly the kind of condensed milk that I already had in my cupboard (Longevity brand is what Lebovitz recommends … you buy it at Asian markets, and it’s usually pretty cheap) … so … dulce de leche pudding! And feeling a little better, in all kinds of ways.
This recipe is based on the butterscotch pudding recipe I wrote about awhile back, from Gourmet (which I already miss terribly).
Dulce de Leche pudding
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- 2 tbsp. plus 1 1/2 tsp. cornstarch
- 1 batch of David Lebovitz’s dulce de leche, or 1 1/4 cups of the store-bought kind
- 1 cup whole milk
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into bits
In a medium saucepan, whisk together the sugar, salt, and cornstarch. Then, whisk in the dulce de leche and milk. Bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking frequently, and then boil, whisking constantly, for one minute.
Remove from the heat, and whisk in the butter. Pour out into a bowl, cover with plastic, and then refrigerate until cooled, 60 to 90 minutes.
You could serve this with whipped cream, if you wanted to, but you don’t have to. Plain on its own is more than fine.
I’ve got to go now to eat my pudding and drink yet another mug of Neo-Citran, which doesn’t put me to sleep but does dull the senses a bit, right in time to watch the EMAs and doze off on the couch. I survived last night so I’m confident I’ll survive this one; fighting the flu is exhausting. Thank goodness for soft foods and elastic-waist pants.