Sunday, January 19, 2014

Once Upon a Time in Laura's Kitchen: Amaretto Lime Tres Leches

All the leches may have caused minor droopage and made it slightly less photogenic...
Since Laura was teaching me how to make the perfect Mexican Dinner with her Puerco and Veggie Pibil, the least I could do was help finish the night with the Perfect Mexican dessert-Tres Leches. As this was a special day (read: I've already written up normal tres leches and I needed more material), I decided to try a bold, new approach to the milky goodness. I would transform it with amaretto and lime.

Would my going off book pay off or would everyone be content to simply go into a meat coma after dinner?

Amaretto Lime Tres Leches
Adapted from Alton Brown
Previously seen in non Amaretto Lime form Here
Servings: 1 9"x13" Cake
Time: 3+ hours (inactive for 2+)
Spongy batter

Vegetable Oil
6 3/4 oz cake flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp sea salt
4 oz unsalted butter, room temp
8 oz sugar
5 large eggs
1tbsp Amaretto
Juice of 1 lime
Zest of 2-3 limes

Find the lime zest!
1 12 oz can evaporated milk
1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup half-andphalf

2 cups heavy whipping cream
8 oz sugar
1 tbsp Amaretto
Zest of 3 limes (about 1 tbsp)
Strawberries, Raspberries, Blackberries and Blueberries

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 F.
  2. Lightly oil and flour a 9"x13" metal baking pan.
  3. Whisk the cake flour, baking powder and salt together in a bowl (note: all measurements are by weight).
  4. Beat the butter in a mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy.
  5. Slowly incorporate the sugar with the butter at low speed. 
  6. Mix in the eggs one at a time until fully incorporated.
  7. Add in the amaretto, lime juice and lime zest.
  8. Gradually mix in the dry ingredients at low speed, taking care not to overmix.
  9. Pour the batter into the pan and bake for 20-25 minutes or until the toothpick test comes back clean.
  10. Poke holes throughout the cake with a fork and let it cool.
  11. Once cooled, whisk the glaze ingredients together in a bowl and pour it over the cake.
  12. Refrigerate covered for at least 2 hours (the longer the better).
  13. Make the frosting by whisking the whipping cream, sugar, amaretto and lime zest together at medium speed until peaks start to form. Then, ramp it up to high speed until it thickens.
  14. Spread the whipped cream over the cake and top with berries.
  15. Realize that the whipping cream really makes this cuatro leches and have your mind blown!
None of the other guests realized how close they were to not getting dessert as I debated diving in face first like a pie eating contest.
Tres leches truly is a marvel of the cake world. It's an incredibly simple cake to make, and it looks unbelievably unassuming. All that hidden milk (well, at least it's usually more hidden than you'll see below) somehow manages to transform it into a dessert like no other. In order to make this version, I took my previously used normal tres leches recipe and subbed amaretto for vanilla (at a slightly higher rate) and added in some lime zest and lime juice (but only use juice in the batter unless you want some ugly curdled whipped cream).

I had a sneaking suspicion that this may be packed with leches.
This tres leches was absolutely bursting with flavor (and milk...). The lime completely transformed it into a memorable dessert. I would say unfortunately the amaretto got lost in the mix, but it really didn't matter. This cake tasted incredible without really being able to notice the amaretto (although I'm sure it still contributed to the awesome). Double dousing the lime also led to an even more refreshing whipped cream topping. In a few short minutes, 3/4 of the cake were quickly decimated, which had me feeling quite good about its success, but then I received the greatest compliment ever as Blaine exclaimed "It has a Froot Loops aftertaste, and I mean that in a good way!" Yes, I had finally found the perfect dessert to get to the heart of everyone's inner six year old's love of fruity, sugary milk. Take that Alton Brown and your normal, boring Tres Leches!
I was proven correct. Welcome to tres leches soup! Toucan Sam would be proud.
Now that was one day of cooking, eating and enjoying tasty cocktails (compliments of our other former RA, Kevin) that will be hard to top anytime soon. Stay tuned later this week as Kevin (the non former RA) and I begin our journey into the mysterious world of the crock pot.

Kevin enjoys a delightfuly refreshing cocktail compliments of Kevin the RA. Now let's hope he knows as much about crock pot cooking as he does about looking super manly.

No comments:

Post a Comment