It’s rare to love a food so much, you’d eat it at breakfast, lunch, and dinner. But that’s exactly what they do with dulce de leche in Buenos Aires, Argentina.
For those who’ve never had the pleasure, dulce de leche is a thick, sweet caramel-colored paste made from milk, sugar, and vanilla. The story of its origin is sticky. Argentina, Uruguay, Brazil, and Chile all claim to have invented this heavenly paste, but to say it is a Latin American invention would force us to ignore France and Portugal’s confiture de lait and twelve of leite. So, let’s just say, dulce de leche is a global phenomenon.
In Buenos Aires, it’s common to find a heaping bowl on the breakfast table. You can drizzle it on your pancakes. Spread it on your toast. Dip your warm churro into it. Or stir it into your coffee for a sweet, caramel twist. The pleasure is all yours.
Both at lunch and dinner, where dessert is likely to be served, you’ll find dulce de leche on top, alongside, in between, or underneath almost every selection. For instance, a generous swath will arrive alongside your custard flan. You’ll find a thin wisp in your alfajores - divinely inspired vanilla wafers stacked with chocolate mousse. It will be artfully drizzled across your apple crepe to balance to the fruit’s tartness and hiding gleefully beneath a mound of vanilla ice cream.
At first taste, dulce de leche is almost painfully sweet. But used sparingly, its roasted caramel flavor adds a delicious dimension to its host. Hopefully you will come to adore it – because it will be making frequent appearances during your time in Buenos Aires.