The name may be familiar to you but our Brazilian ambrosia is very different from the American and European recipes. It is a dessert made of milk, eggs, sugar and cinnamon. This is a traditional, homely dessert that has been around since maybe 1800’ and was a part of some of the most sophisticated meals in Minas Gerais.
It is also a common dessert in the South of Brazil; one which has been passed down from generation to generation. For me it is a delicious homemade dessert that evokes sweet memories of childhood and is the comfort food that I need whenever I feel a little homesick.
My version of ambrosia is slightly different from the traditional one. Here I have added condensed milk and let the sugar caramelize in order to get a caramel or “Dulce de Leche” taste.
A little bit of patience and time is needed as you have to keep your eyes on it and stir it a few times so the mixture doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan.
- 1 cup sugar
- 6 eggs
- 1 ½ cup of water
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 ½ cup of milk
- 1 can sweetened condensed milk
- powdered cinnamon (optional)
- In a medium saucepan melt the sugar over a medium to low flame until it is caramel in colour. Add the water (this time the sugar will harden) and let the syrupy liquid bubble away for a couple of minutes. Stir occasionally. Add the butter and let it melt.
- In a separate bowl, beat the eggs and add to the syrupy liquid without mixing it for a minute. When the eggs begin to set, it will form lumps. Stir gently with a fork, separating the cooked eggs from the syrup. Add the cinnamon.
- Pour in the milk and condensed milk and stir to mix. Let it all come back to a gentle bubble. Stir occasionally. Reduce the heat to low. If the lumps become too big, use a fork to break them into smaller sizes.
- Let it cook for a while until the liquid reduces but still has a voluptuous creaminess about it, stirring frequently so the mixture doesn’t stick to the bottom of the pan. Remove from the heat and let it cool for at least an hour before putting in a jar.
- Keep in the refrigerator.