Authentic Colombian dessert.
July 18, 2007 12:16 PM   Subscribe

I want to make a Colombian dessert. What's something fairly easy and also typical, that I could bring into work for about 8-10 people?

I was thinking flan, but if there's something more authentic that would be great. I definitely don't have time for anything too labor intensive. I am also not so much with the fancy cooking, but would like to avoid anything out of the box.

Another question, how authentic is flan?
posted by sweetkid to Food & Drink (15 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Flan or Tres Leches Cake would be pretty typical.
posted by Pollomacho at 1:05 PM on July 18, 2007

The Colombian lady at my work seems to be a big fan of Tres Leches cake, so I'd go with that. Your mileage with Colombians that don't work at my office my vary.
posted by infinitywaltz at 1:10 PM on July 18, 2007

If you have access to a Colombian grocery store (I see from your profile that you're in NY, so definitely), then "Obleas con arequipe" (large paper-thin wafers with "cooked milk") have to be the easiest Colombian dessert. Just spread a thick layer of arequipe on one oblea, cover it with another oblea and voila. I'm pretty sure these guys sell arequipe (Alpina is the best for this) and obleas. Good luck!
posted by juva at 1:17 PM on July 18, 2007

Arequipe is also known as "dulce de leche" in case your local South American grocer stocks it by that name.
posted by needled at 1:38 PM on July 18, 2007

natilla > flan
posted by dorian at 3:01 PM on July 18, 2007

"obleas con arequipe" are better known in some Latin cuisines as alfajores.
posted by rxrfrx at 3:09 PM on July 18, 2007

Thanks for the tips! I found a link to a tres leches cake recipe online.

Can someone tell me what "v teaspoons baking powder" and " y cup cold milk" means?
posted by sweetkid at 4:01 PM on July 18, 2007

Extrapolating from this recipe, which seems to be double (and more likely suited to feed 8-10), the epicurean recipe probably calls for 1/4 cup milk and 1 tsp baking powder.

I love how they say "one can" evaporated milk or condensed milk. Condensed and evaporated milk each come in three or four different sizes. Let's try to figure out what size the writer is assuming....
posted by watsondog at 4:44 PM on July 18, 2007

I've only seen one size can of condensed or evaporated milk at the supermarkets around here (Boston).
posted by rxrfrx at 5:53 PM on July 18, 2007

what size is that can, rxrfrx?
posted by sweetkid at 6:14 PM on July 18, 2007

Due to the abundance of cows and the tropical climate, fruit and milk are the base of most Colombian desserts, and the variations are endless.

Fruit in some form is usually eaten for dessert. If you can find preserved figs in syrup (brevas en almibar) at your local Spanish foods market, pair it up with Epicurious' decent recipe for arequipe and you have the typical Colombian dessert my family enjoys.

Natilla is a flan-type custard made with cornstarch that I've had served with mashed raspberries.

My personal favorite (though I think its origins are European) is the Pastel de Gloria, which is a flaky croissant-like pastry with a dollop of guava (aka guayaba) paste inside and is sprinkled on top with sugar crystals. I think they're fairly ubiquitous in Spanish countries, probably because they're so yummy. You could try this complex recipe or go the cheater's way and make a guava turnover.

posted by Queen of Spreadable Fats at 6:56 PM on July 18, 2007

I checked when I was out buying groceries tonight. Evaporated milk comes in four sizes and condensed in three.
posted by watsondog at 1:15 AM on July 19, 2007

sweetkid: not sure of the exact volume, but the condensed milk comes in little squat cans and the evaporated milk comes in what looks like a standard-size "small" can. this is even at the supermarket with the heavy latino consumer population.
posted by rxrfrx at 7:43 AM on July 19, 2007

Okay. Here they come in sizes (roughly) of one, two, three, and (for evaporated) four cups. The 380 ml size, which is the three-cup size, is the most common.
posted by watsondog at 11:35 AM on July 19, 2007

thanks watsondog! thanks everyone for the great responses. I'm going to pick up some stuff and make the tres leches cake.
posted by sweetkid at 11:52 AM on July 19, 2007

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