Intro: How to Make Portuguese Leite-creme
This is a recipe I got from the mum of a friend of mine in Lisboa.
Using the iron on the laite-creme is the fun part, enjoy it!
Step 1: Preparing the Creme
First, what you need: 3 egg yolks, sugar, flour, 1 lt. milk, 1 lemon, cinnamon, and some special caramel-iron that the more skilled among you can maybe do themselves.
Put the iron onto the cooker. It will have to be extremely hot! Mix the yolks with the lemon zest as in the pictures. Use a deep small pot. Then add some sugar. 3-4 spoons will do, the quantity depends on your personal taste. I prefer the laite-creme not to be too sweet. Then, you will need some flour (just 3-4 spoons), and mix very well.
Now, it's time to add the main ingredient: the laite or MILK. You will need one whole litre, which you will VERY SLOWLY add to the creme while mixing it constantly.
Step 2: Cooking the Leite-creme
Keep on mixing slowly and uninterruptedly while putting the pot on the cooker, medium to high. Be patient and just listen to some nice music if you get bored with the mixing, it's worth the effort!
At some point, the whole thing will start to grow and be slightly bubbly. Turn the heat to low and keep on turning, for another couple of minutes. Then filter to a nice flat plate or something similar (I used glass because it looks nicer!) and let it cool down.
Step 3: Ironing the Leite-creme :-)
Now, things get interesting: after having spread some cinnamon and sugar on top of the leite-creme, you take the hot iron and very softly and delicately, trying to stay parallel to the creme surface and not to press it down, caramelise it for 5-10 seconds. try to detach the iron quickly, otherwise the creme surface will break.
Every now and then, clean the iron with some hot water and something to scratch off it all caramel remainings. Add some more sugar, if some parts are not as brown and shiny as you would like them to be. This is about it: after one or two hours, the leite-creme is ready to be enjoyed. Some leave it in the fridge for a couple of hours too. Personally, I hardly ever manage to wait and eat it when it's warm - it's nevertheless delicious!
PS I will try to make the leite-creme using an old antique iron - it will be hard not to press the creme too heavily, but I think it might work!!!