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Why a PINK chef's coat?

Simply put, I carry my Dad's legacy with me through my cookbook, cooking and everyday I am writing my food columns, he is always with me. I carry my Mom with me through a silent reminder of her struggle with breast cancer that took her life, as well as the lives of many other women who have dealt with, and are still dealing with, this horrible affliction. Besides, why not pink? It makes a man look good!

Creamy and Rich Confiture de Lait(Milk Jam)

Keep reading, I promise it gets better! Confiture de Lait is to France what Dulce de Leche is to Latin America. This sweetened, thick milk is perfect for dipping fruits into, as a frosting to cakes and simply to add to other ingredients(such as GF French Pumpkin Gingerbread Bars) to give it a sweetened, caramel flavor. There is a difference between these two National mainstays however.  While dulce de leche tends to be a thin condiment, confiture de lait is usually thicker, perfect as a spread for breads and morning muffins. Think of it as a softer version of the caramel coating on an apple that you enjoyed as a child.

There are numerous ways of preparing this thick sweetened spread. I, however, have always stuck with the safe way(as opposed to submerging a can of milk in water for hours with fear of an eruption)by baking it.

My best advice for you? Do NOT use full fat sweetened condensed milk if the flavor of it is not your cup of tea. That particular flavor is still quite obvious even after cooking. The solution is simple. Use fat free sweetened, condensed milk. Not only has that singular flavor that is so well known of this milk disapeared, but the caramel flavor is twice that of full fat. PLUS, after the time baking referred to below, you can see that the color is darker. In the picture, the full fat is at the bottom, the fat free is in the middle. As for the top picture? That is the full fat milk that cooked for 1 hour longer, and it still had that sweetened, condensed milk flavor in abundance.

 

Ingredients

For 1 Batch(es)

Recipe

  • 1 (14-ounce)can fat free sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Creamy and Rich Confiture de Lait(Milk Jam) Directions

  1. Empty milk into a oven safe pie pan(I used a glass pie pan) and place it into a large baking pan with at least a 2 inch side. Cover pan with milk tightly with foil, but don't let it touch the milk: place back into water bath. Put in a 400-degree F oven and cook for 1 1/2 hours. Carefully slide rack out from oven and take milk pans from water bath using pot holders. Remove foil and carefully stir caramelized milk with either a small whisk or a fork until as smooth as possible. It will be clumped up a little bit.
  2. Put foil tightly back on milk pan and place back into baking pan, adding more water if needed. Continue cooking a half hour longer for a lighter tasting caramel milk or 1 full hour for a dark, rich result.
  3. Remove for the last time but let it cool for a few minutes after taking from water bath. Add vanilla and whisk until smooth. Cover and refrigerate until needed or use at room temperature for adding to a recipe, such as French Pumpkin Gingerbread Bars.
  4. Makes 3/4 cup
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