My husband and I are excited to be going to Nicaragua for the first time later this year. In order to better understand the Nicaraguan culture, I thought I better try a Nicaraguan recipe, Tres Leches Cake (Cake of Three Milks) from Compassion Nicaragua’s Tours and Visit Specialist Scarlett Flores.
Scarlett says that some believe Tres Leches Cake originated in Nicaragua, although it’s enjoyed throughout Central America. So if you have a sponsored child in Nicaragua or anywhere in Central America, you could try out this cake for a tasty treat — maybe on a night your family prays together for your sponsored child.
The cake was easy to make. I creamed together a stick of butter with ¾ cup sugar. (“Cream” simply means beating the butter and sugar together until the mixture is fluffy and light.)
Then I added 5 eggs, one at a time, and ½ teaspoon of vanilla … although I may have let my hand slip and add 1 teaspoon of vanilla. Then I beat the mixture about a minute more until it was foamy … or about as foamy as I suspected it was going to get.
I never ever sift my flour — it seems like just one more bowl to wash — but I did it for you, dear reader, to be true to the recipe. After sifting the flour and baking soda, I folded it into the batter.
Then the batter went into an 8″x11″ baking dish. (Alright, almost all of it. It was delicious batter and tasted just like Christmas spritz cookie dough.) I baked it for 30 minutes at 350 degrees, and it came out nice and golden.
Then I took a nice long walk to let the cake cool. You could also do such activities as watching “Dancing with the Stars” or writing your sponsored child. Preferably the latter. After the cake was cooled, I took out some aggression on that cake and poked it full of holes.
Here are the three milks I used. I admit, I used 1 percent milk instead of whole milk. I figure sweetened condensed milk covers a multitude of sins, right?
Next I poured the three milks over the cake, and it immediately started seeping into the cake. My baby thought it was amazing.
The recipe said to let it soak for 2 to 8 hours. Guess how long I waited? That’s right, 2 hours. I couldn’t wait to dive in. So I made the whipped cream topping. Rather than ½ cup of sugar and 1 teaspoon of vanilla, as the recipe calls for, I used ¼ cup sugar and 2 teaspoons vanilla — just personal preference.
I wasn’t sure how this was going to turn out. I live at 6,900 feet in a very dry climate — rather different from Nicaragua, and my made-from-scratch cakes often seem to flop. But this cake was delicious. It was dense, but the milks made it moist. The whipped cream on top made it seem somehow lighter (while adding serious calories per plate. ☺ )
I could eat only one piece, so you should invite some friends over to share it with you. I hope you and your family will enjoy this cake while remembering and praying for your sponsored child in Nicaragua or Central America!