Top 5 Dulce de Leches

(Photo by sunday driver)

Dulce de leche is a part of the local identity, and many a visitor has become a fan of its delicious sweet taste.  Not every dulce de leche is the same however (find a recipe here).  Some are darker with an intense sugary flavor, others more milky and smooth. Keep in mind that there are three types for different uses: the classic dulce de leche, the respostero (to make cakes and other baked goods), and a special kind for making ice cream.

Below is our pick of the top 5 classic dulce de leches for you sample and pick up on the way home!

Chimbote: This creamy dulce de leche is one of the most well known, especially amongst D.d.L fans from abroad that stock up on the milky caramel at the Duty Free shop on the way back home.  A top quality spread with just the right balance of sweetness.

Havanna: The famous Mar del Plata alfajor company has made its fans happy with this dark and thick dulce de leche. Its grainy texture and deep sweet flavor is a perfect pair for desserts such as crepes and flan.

 La Salamandra: This top quality dulce de leche became famous internationally after winning a prize at The Fancy Food Show in New York and exporting to over 25 countries. It’s easily found in supermarkets and perfect to enjoy by the spoonful.

Estancia el Rosario: These dulce de leche producers are in Cordoba and they stand out for their variety of dulce de leches, including solid dulce de leche bars and goat milk dulce de leche. They also offer a 450g pot that comes in a milk jug that makes a great gift. Find the addresses of stores in Buenos Aires that sell their products here.

El Monacal: The monks from Abadía del Niño de Dios in Entre Rios are responsible for this creamy homemade delicacy that they produce with milk from their own dairy farm. They also make cheese, beer and honey, providing jobs to the community. Their dulce de leches are available in health stores around the city and in big churches such as the Abadía de San Benito in Belgrano.

5 O´Clock Tea in Buenos Aires

(Photo by ulterior epicure)

 

L’Orangerie: The lavish Hotel Alvear restaurant is a Buenos Aires classic for fancy tartlets and tea served in china cups. Open in the afternoon from 4.30pm-7pm. Alvear, Av. 1891, Recoleta. 4808-2100

 

Las Violetas: An assortment of cakes, sweets and sandwiches are served in this stunning traditional teahouse in the Almagro neighborhood. Golden chandeliers, Italian marble floors, and stained glass windows decorate Las Violetas, a unique place to indulge your sweet tooth. Av. Rivadavia 3899, Abasto. 4958-7387

 

Chez Pauline: This French style teahouse has a unique variety of tea blends and French pastries. They also offer mate tastings with information about the history and legends related to this typical Argentine beverage, and tea tastings. Juncal 1695, Recoleta. 4816 9988

 

Nucha: Nucha’s enterprise began many years ago, when she decided to commercialize her cakes, first offering them door to door to cafe’s, then selling them from her garage to her neighbors and now, experimenting with baking techniques to satisfy the demands of their 8 tea houses around the city.

 

Croque Madame: Set in the stunning Museum of Decorative Art, this cafe and restaurant is a great place to stop for some baked goods and quality tea and coffee. The garden setting and the impressive architecture make for more than just a culinary experience.  Avenida del Libertador 1902 I T: (011) 4806-8639

We Recommend: Sugar & Spice

Minibar scavengers who have stayed at the Fierro Hotel probably still remember the irresistible gourmet cookies by Sugar & Spice that awaited them each day. These delectable sweet treats have almost become a Palermo staple and all due to the care and dedication put into each of their baked goods made with only top quality products.

As they themselves say “duhh, if you use a lot of the best chocolate, fresh sweet butter and walnuts, anyone can make a great brownie like that”.

Fortunately, the Sugar & Spice store is close to the hotel and we can all enjoy their treats. If you’re in the Palermo area we suggest you stop by for cantucci, biscotti, brownies, cookies, salty snacks, pound cakes and their special stolen which they make year round.  Plus, if you let them know in advance that you’re coming they might even have a surprise gift prepared for you!

 

Sugar & Spice

Guatemala 5419, Palermo

4777 5423

atencionalcliente@sugarandspice.com.ar

Local Specialties to Indulge your Sweet Tooth.

Grey cold days like the ones we’ve been having lately are great for comforting afternoon snacks in traditional teahouses such as Las Violetas in Almagro or Confiteria La Ideal downtown. Here are some local specialties to sweeten the afternoon.

Dulce de leche: Probably the most famous of Argentine sweets, this caramel cream is used in pastries, spread on toast, eaten by the spoonful and included in all kinds of desserts.

Alfajores:  A typical sandwich like snack made up of two “cookies” usually filled by, you guessed it, dulce de leche, (although there are variety’s filled with fruit jams and chocolate  as well) and covered in chocolate, confectionary, sugar or coconut. More information about alfajores is available here.

Rogel Cake: A very sweet cake made with alternating layers of puff pastry and dulce de leche and topped with meringue.

Pasta Frola Quince pie: Another typical sweet used in pastry’s and deserts is Quince paste (dulce de membrillo) and candied yam jam (dulce de batata), which are often combined with cheese for dessert. Quince paste also the main ingredient of Pasta Frola, a fruity pie that goes well with coffee.

Medialunas and Facturas: The local croissants and pastry’s come in many varieties. There are two types of medialunas (croissants), de grasa (made with lard) or de manteca (made with butter). The first is crunchier and thin, the second puffy and moist. Amongst the pastries you will find varieties with dulce de leche, with quince and yam jam, and with custard (crema pastelera).

Vainillas: These very lightweight  airy “cookies”  made from egg, vanilla and sugar are the favorite of many local children (and adults who wont admit it) who dunk them in milk as an afternoon snack.

Submarino: Another thing Argies like to dunk is a bar of chocolate in a cup of hot milk for a local take on a typical winter comforter.

How to Make Dulce de Leche

(Photo by Sunday Driver)

Those who have been to Argentina will surely agree that dulce de leche is an instantly acquired taste, and have probably taken some back home with them. Now we challenge you to try making your own!

You will need:

-A copper pot
-1 litre of milk
– 200 grams of sugar
-1 teaspoon of baking soda dissolved in half a cup of water
– Vanilla extract (approximately a tablespoon or to taste)

Begin by bringing the milk and sugar to a boil on a very low fire and stirring constantly.
Slowly add the dissolved baking soda and vanilla, continue stirring.
Continue to cook until it acquires the typical brown color of this dulce de leche. (It will take approximately 2 hours).

Let us know how it went and how you like to eat your dulce de leche the most!