There are so many uses for this milk jam than I know what to do with. Use it simply as a topping over ice cream, sandwich cookies, spread it on sweet bread or buns (as the French do!) or just eat it with a spoon right out of the fridge. If you are using it for baking and in other recipes, cook it for a shorter amount of time to get a runnier consistency for ease of use. Nevertheless, the caramel will soften with a blast in the microwave.
And before you ask, skim milk burns like buggery, so yes, it has to be full fat milk or nothing. And please, please, wait until it’s cooled before you dig in (it’s tough but doable!). Believe me scalded lips are just not fun.
Confiture de Lait (caramel milk jam)
(enough to make one jar – around 250-375ml)
1 Litre (4 cups) whole milk
300g caster sugar
½ tsp sea salt
½ tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla extract
In a pot large enough to fit the liquid with at least 10-15cm from the top of the pot to the level of the milk, add milk and stir in the sugar, salt, baking soda and vanilla extract.
Turn heat to med-high and bring the milk mixture to a boil without stirring. Once you see the milk start to boil and bubble slightly, get ready to turn the heat right down because the milk may froth and rise if it is overboiled.
Once it’s boiled, turn the heat down to the lowest (until it’s barely a simmer) and skim the foam. Continue to simmer uncovered for around 2 – 2.5 hours, stirring constantly (around every 10 minutes or so is best if you’re free) and skimming the foam when necessary.
2: getting frothy and rising as it boils
3: overboiling will cause the milk to rise fast (and spill over so be careful)
4: bringing it down to a simmer
Check the consistency at about 2 hours. I usually stop it now when I want a runnier caramel to use in other recipes. Cook it a little longer if you want a thicker jam to use as a spread or to sandwich cookies. Just remember that it’ll thicken up more while it cools and when it’s in the fridge.
Pour into a clean jar and cool uncovered. When it has cooled completely, stick the lid on and store it in the fridge (it should keep for around 1 to 3 weeks).