Two Brown Girls

Two brown girls, two countries, and two kitchens in which to play!

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Redesign News

Two Brown Girls has undergone a minor cosmetic procedure. However, while our colour scheme may have changed, our layout remains essentially the same. One fun new addition is an RSS feed, available from the sidebar. Other changes (improvements, really) are coming up so stay tuned!

Sunday, March 12, 2006

Dulce de Leche Madelines and Desperate Housewives

Have I mentioned my deep and intense love for Desperate Housewives?


Well since the advent of Desperate Housewives and Grey's Anatomy my Sunday nights have officially become sacred, off-limits to other plans, completely devoted to slavish adoration of the miracle that is prime-time programming.

This particular Sunday I happened to be back at home for Spring Break, and with a dire craving for something sweet coupled with a complete unwillingness to leave the house in search of Ben and Jerrys, I decided to do a little experimenting. After all, its not that often that I have the wonders of their kitchen to exploit. And thus, Dulce de Leche Madelines were created. (Ignore the giant pot of curry my dad decided to make in a classic incidence of brown welcome-home cooking).

Really, they're quite amazing -- slightly sticky little bites with just the right of carmelization on the exterior and an oh-so-tender cake-y interior. I kept it light on vanilla, because I really wanted the dulce de leche taste to come through, and I think throwing in the brandy really worked (although I always think throwing in a little booze works).

Dulce de Leche Madelines (All amounts are approximate!)
1 Can sweetened condensed milk
2 eggs
1/2-2/3 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
Pinch of coarse salt
1/4 tsp vanilla
Slug of brandy
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
scant 1/4 cup white sugar (I may have used even less than this, the condensed milk really is SWEET)
Madeline Pans (2)
Nonstick spray

Preheat oven to 375F.

Combine the softened butter and sugar. Beat in the eggs. Add the vanilla and the condensed milk. In a seperate bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. (You can sift them together, but I find sifters a pain to clean, so my quick and dirty trick is to dump them all in a bowl and aggravate the mixture with a whisk).

Using a spoon (nothing dinky, I grabbed a big basic serving spoon from the cutlery drawer and it was perfect) add the flour mixture into the liquid mixture. Continue adding until you have something that looks like pancake batter (it'll be a little stickier/heavier/gooier feeling than pancake batter when you stir due to the condensed milk). Add that slug of brandy. Let the batter sit for a minute while you prep the pans.

Spray the madeline pans with nonstick spray. This was pure laziness on my part (I usually grease and flour pans properly, but it was 825 dammit and I wanted these done before the show!), feel free to grease your pans however you please.

However, I made an interesting discovery (Que sidenote music here). I grabbed the first cooking spray I found in the pantry, Crisco all purpose, sprayed the first pan with it, filled it and stuck it in the oven. Then I put my head back into the pantry and discovered Pam with Flour (For Baking! as the label informs me), treated the second pan with it, filled it, and baked that.

Guess what? Crisco all-purpose pretty much sucks for baking delicious and slightly sticky treats in madeline pans. Witness my pain!

Pam with flour? A joy! A revelation! Clearly, those people at Pam know whats up.

Anyways, let the pans sit for a minute, then slide the madelines out while theyre a bit warm (using a dull implement to assist should they prove slightly stubborn) and enjoy!

Oh, and if you make the mistake of using Crisco on your pans then forget the knife. Just bring them to the couch with you and eat the sweet carmelized cakey goodness right out of the tins with your hands. After all, its just you and the ladies of Wisteria Lane, right?