Sunday Treat – “Dulce de Leche” from “Guys and Dolls”

sundae1The Wall Street Journal’s Eric Felten, inspired by the Broadway revival of Guys and Dolls, tried to dig up the recipe for the Dulce de Leche cocktail that plays a critical role in the story. (On a date in Cuba, Sky Masterson tries to get prim and prudish Sarah Brown to order a drink. She asks for a milkshake, and Sky orders a “Dulce de Leche” for her instead, which contains, according to Sky, the “preservative” of Bacardi. They end up drinking a lot of “milkshakes.”)

Felten can’t find evidence that in 1950 Cuba dulce de leche was anything more than it is today – ice cream and thick caramel sauce or a caramel candy. But, he writes, “it turns out, [there is] a traditional Cuban cocktail that was served in swanky Havana hotspots in the 1950s, one that would have been just the thing to unlace Sarah Brown — the Doncellita. Roughly translated as “little lady” or “maiden,” the Doncellita is made of cold, chocolaty crème de cacao topped with a layer of heavy cream and a cocktail cherry. ‘This sweet, innocent-tasting drink was supposed to incline us toward our downfall,” writes Viviana Carballo in her poignant memoir of food and family in pre-Castro Cuba, “Havana Salsa.’”

Felten even includes the recipe:

Doncellita

2 oz dark crème de cacao
½ oz heavy cream
Pour the chocolate liqueur in a small, delicate, stemmed glass. On top, float a layer of heavy cream (first, you might whip the cream ever so slightly to make it float easier). To layer the cream, pour it across the back of a spoon, the tip of which is pressed against the inside of the glass, right at the surface of the liqueur — just as you would with an Irish Coffee. Garnish, dead center in the cream, with a cherry.

Read the entire story in the Wall Street Journal here.

Watch the results of the effects of the drink on Sarah (Jean Simmons) and Sky (Marlon Brando) below.

About rhapsodyinbooks

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