Condensed milk, like it‘s name suggests is a reduced form of milk. It is made by removing the water content in milk. It is available as sweetened condensed milk or unsweetened. In some countries evaporated milk is referred to as condensed milk. It is a key ingredients in several desserts, especially Indian sweets like burfee, gulab jamun and coconut ice. A very good reason to make your own at home. Growing up condensed milk was always one of the most expensive ingredient to buy, so Amma always used it sparingly and in the hope that everything made with this precious ingredient did not flop. Making homemade condensed milk is a simpler process than I imagined. It is a recipe that came about after much trial and error, finally I am pleased enough to share the results. Some homemade recipes use powdered milk and butter. This is a very simple recipes that is also easy to make using juts two ingredients sugar and milk. It is simply a milk and sugar mixture boiled until the sugar and milk form a thick syrup like texture.
For convenience go straight to the recipe or continue to read the process and story.
Amma and Condensed Milk
Like most recipes in the blog, there is always a story behind it too. Amma often told us how condensed milk was her vice in her younger years, she loved to drink tea with condensed milk. I can’t say the same for myself, because of it’s high sugar content, it is better used for sweet treats rather than everyday indulgence. It reminds me of steri milk, which was less sweet than condensed milk but is also a concentrated form a milk which accounts for its appeal to those with a sweet tooth, like Amma had. We had a monthly case of steri milk for special treat days and when we were expecting visitors.
How to Make Homemade Condensed Milk
The inspiration for this recipe comes from the Times of India condensed milk recipe, which used only two ingredients. It did not work as well for me so I tried a few variations by increasing the sugar content. For this recipe I used a ratio of 1 part milk to 2 parts sugar. It worked perfectly. One of the advantages of all thing homemade is that you get to choose the ingredients use and the amount and type of sugar.
Over the years I have perfected my Burfee recipe by getting the sugar and water to boil to the right temperature,ideal for setting burfee, similarly when making condensed milk, the sugar and milk have to cook on low heat to avoid burning or hardening. In this recipe a watched pot is best.
To make condensed milk at home you need milk and sugar. I used powder ed sugar ( icing sugar), you can use granular sugar as well. Simply combine the two then boil on low heat until thick.
It was quite fascinating watching it form, once the water evaporates the sugar begins to caramelize , slightly changing the colour from white to off white. When this occurs the texture becomes thicker. Remove from heat and store in an airtight container. The mixture will have a thick drippy texture.
I recommend making the day before you intend using the condensed milk, this give the condensed milk a lush thick texture. I used my homemade condensed milk to make a batch of coconut ice for Lakshmi Day next Friday.
Easy Two Ingredient Condensed Milk Recipe
What to Do If…
As you know recipes don’t always 100% turn out like intended, perhaps it is the difference in milk product or sugar but in case the mixture is too thin, simply add a little more sugar. In this instance make sure that it dissolves completely before removing from the stove.
If the mixture is too thick then add a little milk.
Vegan Condensed Milk
This vegan condensed milk is made from coconut milk. It is ideal for making vegan desserts like vegan ice cream or vegan coconut ice. I used the same proportion of ingredients used in the cows milk condensed milk recipe,in this instance, one part coconut milk and two parts icing sugar.
The noticeable difference in the two recipes is that the coconut is thicker than cows milk, but this thins out during early stages of the cooking process and thickens again merged with the sugar.
How to Make Vegan Condensed Milk
The method is the same as regular condensed milk. First dissolve the sugar and milk then boil on low heat.