State Of The Water

Over the summer, I heard of a technique where you take a can of sweetened condensed milk, submerge it in a pot of water, and boil it for a long time; the milk will turn into a lovely caramel sauce!  What I didn’t realize at the time was that “a long time” is actually 3 HOURS.  I decided at 7 p.m. on Tuesday night to try this out.  So from 7 until 10, I was babysitting a pot of water, boiling one little can of condensed milk.  The tricky part of this endeavour is that if the water is allowed to boil down too much, the can could explode.  Every 15 minutes, I went into the kitchen and topped up the pot of water.  Because the can remained sealed throughout the entire boiling, I didn’t think it was necessary to use our filtered water.  Instead, I used the water straight from the tap. 

Well, after three hours, the pot looked like this:   Do you see the layer of white on the bottom?  That is salt. 

The stove top looked like this (because the pot kept splattering over – it was so enthusiastic about boiling!):

That is baked on residue from the water.  So disgusting.  This just solidified my resolve to always use filtered water  in all cooking, even if the water isn’t absorbed (like potatoes).  I also rinse my hair out with a bottle of filtered water.  It’s not excessive.  It’s necessary.  Look what could build up!  Gross! 

What wasn’t disgusting was the lovely caramel sauce that revealed itself when I opened the can:

I used it as the filler between the two layers of a chocolate cake.  I’m looking forward to tasting it tomorrow.  But what can be wrong with chocolate and caramel?  Nothing I tell you! 

Next time, though, I’ll maximize my time by boiling 5 cans at the same time while using my bigger pot to host the boiling party so that the water won’t boil over and Blessing won’t have to scrub the stove top again. *cough*

9 thoughts on “State Of The Water

  1. ancelyna says:

    YUM! My mom used to boil canned sweetened condensed milk when we were kids. But she let it boil for longer and the end result was kind of like toffee candy. Oh I want some now! *drool* But after I saw a photo of a kitchen where a can had exploded I’m a bit afraid of making it.

  2. Sonya says:

    If the container was sealed how did you know when the milk had caramelized? Did you guess?

  3. Sheila says:

    Oh yummie. I do this to make the filling for chocolates at christmas. If you mix this with crunchy peanut butter it tastes like Reeses Cups.
    I do not boil the water (except at first to get it to temperate), then turn it down to medium heat so the can does not explode.

  4. Sheila says:

    P.S. You have to wait an hour or two before opening the can. It has to be kewl to open.

  5. whitegirl says:

    I just left the can sitting in the pot overnight once I shut the heat off, so that it cooled down slowly with the water. I opened it the next morning. I’ve heard that this works really well in pressure cookers as well.

  6. Di says:

    I kinda want to try it and just let the can explode.

  7. H says:

    Couple of geek points in response:

    1. The residue you see is most likely from the salt you added. Salt does not evaperate, so it gets left behind.

    2. Next time use a bigger pot, put a lid on it, and then boil. The bigger pot will prevent the bubbles from going over the edges, and the lid will keep in 95% of the evaperating water, so you don’t have to constantly refill…

    Or.. ya, you can pick up a cheap pressure cooker and do the whole job with less fuel (lower boiling point), no mess, and no user-interaction needed.

  8. whitegirl says:

    1) I didn’t add any salt. That is just water straight from the tap. Very brackish. Gross. Which is my point.

    2) I will be using a much bigger pot next time. Good call on the lid. I’ll use that next time.

    Pressure cooker… I’ve always wanted one but at the same time, I’m terrified of them because of the horror stories my grandma used to tell me (along with the stories about parasitic worms. Thanks, Grandma, I’ll have nightmares.)

  9. […] and, of course, that’s when the pump on the washing machine went on the fritz (because of the crappy state of our water; it’s been since fixed).  Yesterday, I walked into the living room and saw something on the […]

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