Monday, July 18, 2011

Tres Leches

My iPhone auto corrects 'Leches' to 'Leeches.'

I guarantee you this cake has no leeches.

While in Honduras, Rhonda made us a Tres Leches cake to celebrate 2 of our team members' birthdays. It was delicious! I had only had Tres Leches cake once since moving to Texas and had hardly heard of it before then. Georgia's all about pecan pie, peach cobbler, and 'nana puddin,' you see.

On Saturday, we invited the team over for a little post-trip dinner and I thought it would be great to make a Tres Leches cake for dessert.

I had fully intended to take a beautiful Pioneer-Womanesque shot of the cake (hold onto your hats-- this is not the PW tres leches recipe!). I remembered to get the camera only to find the battery was dead, and the charger was nowhere to be found. In the time it took to figure all this out, the cake went from lovely to almost gone. Luckily, one of the teenagers at our little shindig/dinner had brought a camera along and snapped a few pictures for me.

The general consensus

So, make this cake today! Or at least before summer's over- it's kept in the refrigerator (so it's cold and creamy and yum-yum) and is a nice compliment to BBQ or fajitas or... breakfast. You know, whatever floats your boat.

Tres Leches Cake
5 eggs, separated
1 cup flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
some milk.

tres leches ("3 milks"):
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 small can evaporated milk
1 cup whole milk

2 boxes dream whip
2 cups milk
2 tsp vanilla

350 degrees. In a bowl, whip egg whites until peaks are stiff. In a separate bowl, combine egg yolks, vanilla, sugar, and flour until combined. I added some milk because it seemed the right thing to do, but I neglected to measure exactly how much milk I poured in (which incidentally isnt the right thing to do.) I'm gonna make a wild guess and say it was about 1/2 cup. The batter comes out pretty thin- like skinny pancake batter. If it's still too thick, add a little more milk. Just go with it. Anyway, once you've gotten your batter to the perfect consistency, fold the egg whites into the batter. Pour into a greased 9x13 pan and bake 20-30 minutes or until the toothpick comes out clean! Combine your three milks in a small pitcher or large cup and pour the mixture over the hot cake. Put it in the fridge and let the goodness soak itself in.

Several hours later.

When you're about ready to cut & eat your TLC, it's time to make the topping. It is completely acceptable to just bust out a large tub of coolwhip and go crazy. It's also completely acceptable to whip sweetened cream until you have the real thing. I chose method #3, which is kind of a throwback to my past (see the Cherry Yum-Yum post to see what I mean). Make the Dream Whip according to the package. I started with 1 box, which is enough to cover the top of the cake, but I totally believe that TLC deserves a TON of whipped cream, so I made the second box as well. Spread the dream whip over the chilled cake. I also chopped a bottle of maraschino cherries and put those on top of the cake too, but that's totally optional.

So once you've got your cake made to your liking (what, with the coolwhip/whipped cream/dream whip/thin layer/thick layer/cherries/no cherries... there are so many possibilities!), cut into it and enjoy. The milks soak into the sponge cake and marry together to form a creamy, sweet, cold caketastic experience. Too little milk and it's nothing to get excited about. Too much milk and it's like soggy bread pudding. So thank goodness you have a recipe that's kind of not at all exact.

To be honest, I dont really know how mine turned out edible, but by the end of the night, the pan had been scraped clean and I'd gotten many thumbs ups & lots of "yum, that's delicious." I'd mark that down as a success.

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