How To Make Condensed Milk & How To Use It?
Learn all about delicious sweetened condensed milk. What you need to know, from using condensed milk to making it!
Sweetened condensed condensed milk is one of the tastiest dairy products out there. Well, now learn all there is about it, including how to use it and even how to make caramel sauce! Here’s all you need to know about condensed milk.
Condensed Milk, Your Go-to Guide
Condensed milk, which is also known as sweetened condensed milk, is one of the most used ingredients, especially for cakes, cookies, many desserts and other bakes. The sweet, creamy and syrupy stuff is incredibly versatile. Still, it’s often either mistaken with similar products or simply misunderstood.
Knowing your ingredients is the best way of improving your cooking skills, and after reading this guide, you’ll learn all there is about this beautiful dairy product. Condensed milk is definitely here to stay, and you’ll use it now and then for the rest of your life. Why not get to know it better?
Let’s start with the obvious, what is condensed milk and the difference between it and a remarkably similar product, evaporated milk. And if you’re not familiar with condensed milk, get ready to meet one of the most valuable items in the pantry.
What is Condensed Milk?
Condensed milk was created in the mid-1800s. The process of gently heating the milk to eliminate some of its water as steam, up to 60% of it, makes for a more shelf-stable product.
Keep in mind, back then; milk only lasted a few days, so finding ways to make it last longer was paramount. Today milk is shelf-stable because it’s pasteurized. Still, there are many uses for more concentrated dairy, especially when baking treats!
So, condensed milk is reduced milk that has been sweetened to increase its shelf-life almost indefinitely, especially when tightly sealed in a can. And here’s a shocking fact, nearly half the condensed milk is sugar, so it’s packed with calories! Don’t abuse it!
Evaporated Milk Vs. Condensed Milk
First things first. There’s no such thing as sweetened condensed milk and regular condensed milk. All condensed milk is mixed with sugar; therefore, it’s syrupy and sweet.
Condensed milk is sweetened evaporated milk, so if you see a can labeled as evaporated milk, it probably isn’t sweet. Condensed milk will always be sweet, though.
The name is completely wrong, we know, both products are evaporated milk and both are condensed milk. In fact, condensed milk can be labeled as sweetened and unsweetened. Unsweetened plain milk is called condensed milk.
There’s nothing worse than mistaking condensed milk with evaporated milk, significantly if you already added it to the mixing bowl with the other ingredients!
How to Make Sweetened Condensed Milk?
There are few reasons for making your own condensed milk since it’s available worldwide, and it doesn’t cost much. You can still make a batch if you want to.
The first method for making condensed milk is simply sweetening a can of evaporated milk, as they’re basically the same product. You’ll need to add at least equal parts of sugar and evaporated milk, and to dissolve it, you’ll need to heat it on the stovetop over a low flame.
The second method is a bit trickier, and it involves actual milk and sugar. You’ll need to reduce the milk in half, which might take up to two hours on the stovetop, and you must constantly stir to prevent the milk from burning. Don’t let it boil either! Then just add equal parts sugar and dissolve it.
How to Make Caramel with Condensed Milk?
Here’s where things get interesting. If you place a sealed can of condensed milk in a large pot with some water and boil it for about two hours, the sugar in the milk will caramelize, and you’ll get a lovely golden-brown caramel sauce.
You can also pour the can’s content into a smaller bowl and cook it over a second, larger pot with boiling water bain-marie-style, also known as the double boiler method. Stir occasionally to prevent the condensed milk from burning and to allow an even caramelization.
Pour homemade caramel sauce over ice cream, garnish cupcakes, drizzle over cookies or flavor milk with it! The best part? You can make a new batch every time you need caramel sauce.
Homemade caramel sauce might take some time, but it’s way better than store-bought. And with a pinch of sea salt, you get salted caramel sauce, isn’t that wonderful?
How to Use Condensed Milk?
Using condensed milk is easy. You can just drizzle the noble ingredient over almost anything to make it taste better. Drizzle it over fruit, Jell-O or ice cream to see what we’re talking about. Topping pancakes and waffles with condensed milk is also a fantastic idea!
Some recipes call for condensed milk as well. You can make no-churn ice cream with it or a creamy cheesecake. You can also bake a pound cake, a Tres Leches cake or flan!
Condensed milk is a lovely coffee sweetener, too, especially if you like the Thai and Vietnamese coffee styles. Use it as a creamer, and you’ll be alright. And talking about drinks, condensed milk is also ideal for hot chocolate. Is there anything condensed milk can’t do?
There are literally thousands of condensed milk recipes online, and you’ll even find some neat recipes in most condensed milk labels! Make sure you always have a can or two in your pantry — you’ll eventually use them, that’s guaranteed.
Make Condensed Milk Part of Your Life
Now you know what condensed milk really is, how to make yours at home, how to make caramel sauce with it and the difference between condensed milk and evaporated milk. You can call yourself an expert!
Now, go get some cans and start cooking with the creamy stuff; you’ll find in condensed milk a reliable partner for all your sweet cooking projects and a few neat drinks as well!
Let’s make condensed milk part of our life but use it mindfully — no one needs all those extra carbs, so use condensed milk with caution and meet your weight goals!
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