Here's a news flash: Cinco de Mayo is not a big deal in Mexico. It's likely a day like pretty much any other Friday (or whatever day the 5th of May happens to fall upon in any given year.) The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported five things we should know about Cinco de Mayo, among them, these:
- Cinco de Mayo isn’t all that popular in Mexico.
- May 5 is not Mexico’s independence day.
- Americans consume a crazy amount of avocados on Cinco de Mayo (81 million pounds).
Here's another news flash: These Dulce de Leche Bars aren't Mexican either. But the caramel-y goodness between cookie layers has a Spanish name, so I guess that's as good a reason as any to share the recipe now.
The original recipe from Crazy for Crust was made in a 9- by 9-inch pan. It used only 1/2 cup of the Dulce de Leche, which is found in the same aisle as sweetened condensed milk. I decided to double the recipe, use a 10- by 15-inch pan and use the whole can of the dulce de leche. After cooling and cutting into bars, I put a bunch in the freezer, where they will likely make an appearance in suppers to the field. I needed to rebuild my freezer stash anyway.
If you're interested in trying these non-Mexican treats for Cinco de Mayo, you may also want to peruse other County Line tried-and-true non-authentic Mexican offerings. While this assortment of main dishes and desserts aren't authentic Mexican fare either, they are favorites here on our farm in the middle of Kansas. (See the links at the bottom of this post.)
Dulce de Leche Bars
Adapted from Crazy for Crust
1 1/2 cups butter
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 tbsp. vanilla extract
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cream of tartar
1 tsp. salt
4 cups flour
1 can Dulce de Leche (found in the same aisle as sweetened condensed milk - Nestle makes one version)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 10- by 15-inch pan with cooking spray and set aside.
Cream butter and sugars together until fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla, mixing until smooth. Combine dry ingredients. Add flour mixture to creamed mixture until just combined.
Press about 2/3 of the mixture into the bottom of the prepared pan. Spread Dulce de Leche over the top, then sprinkle with remaining dough over the top, pressing down lightly. (It won't completely cover the caramel.)
Bake for 22 to 25 minutes or until the top looks done and is golden around the edges. It will be somewhat "jiggly" in the middle, but it will firm up. Cool completely before cutting into bars.
Here, as promised, are the links to some other Tex-Mex offerings, all of which are County Line approved!
Mexican Tortilla Casserole (great for potlucks)
(These are two different links, but the photos are equally bad.)