I’ve only had cajeta crêpes at one restaurant, and that restaurant is Javier’s, in Dallas, Texas. They’re so good we keep ordering them when we’re lucky enough to go there, even when we’ve overeaten after appetizers and dinner. And we’re not even dessert people!
They’re very simply prepared and served – crêpes folded in quarters, topped with cajeta*, which is essentially caramel made from goat’s milk.
I’ve been going to Javier’s since shortly after I moved to Dallas, which was in 1978, for my first job. It was the first time I learned about cajeta. But it was in the book, New Southwestern Cooking, by Carolyn Dille and Susan Belsinger, where I saw the first recipe for cajeta. The book was published in 1985, and I still reference it.
However, their recipe is involved, and I’m not sure why. Cajeta is simply the reduction of goat’s milk with sugar. But in their recipe, some of the sugar is caramelized first, and then added to the milk, which is a combination of goat and cow milk. Plus, their recipe includes cornstarch and baking soda. Maybe I’ll try it one day.
But for now, here’s my version of cajeta. Just like many of the best recipes, this dessert is so simple, yet so perfect.
1 dozen prepared crepes
24 ounces (2 – 12 ounce cans) goat’s milk
3/4 cup sugar
Combine the goat’s milk and sugar in a medium-sized enamel pot. Stir well, then turn on the heat and simmer over the lowest possible heat. It will take about 1 1/2 hours to complete.
Continue stirring with a rubber spatula throughout this process, scraping down the sides of the pot occasionally. A whisk isn’t necessary, because any cajeta that is scraped off of the pot sides gets remelted into the bulk of the hot cajeta.
You can see the goat’s milk and sugar mixture get darker and thicker as it reduces, until it’s ready to use. The cajeta should be still a little thin when it’s hot, but it will thicken as it cools slightly.
Have the prepared crêpes on the serving plate, and drizzle the warm cajeta over them.
Serve these crêpes warm or at room temperature.
They would also be good with some whipped cream, but it’s totally unnecessary to me.
*It’s really hard to decipher the difference between cajeta and dulce de leche. The very similar product is made in Spain, Mexico, and in many South American countries. Sometimes it’s only from cow’s milk, sometimes only goat’s milk, and sometimes a blend of both. I’m sure they’re all good, but I like my cajeta from pure goat’s milk!
note: This recipe can be doubled or tripled. I just didn’t want to make a huge batch. This recipe made almost 1 1/2 cups.
Lovely post, Mimi, and I bet they were delicious. I got my first taste of cajeta in 1963 when the folks took the kids to Mexico for the very first time. We used to eat it with little barquillos (rolled waffle cookies). We would eat it until we were sick. My Dad still loves cajeta and eats it with a spoon. He would love these crepes. We bring him cajeta when we visit, especially during the Holidays. We just can’t find the barquillos anymore.
Thanks, Richard. Have you ever been to Javier’s? I know it would be quite a drive for you, but think about it if you ever have to stay in Dallas overnight some time…
I’ve had jarred cajeta, and it’s pretty damn good too. it’s just fun to make!
Yes, we have been to Javier’s and like it. It’s not too far from Richardson. I need to make cajeta and may give it a try during the Holidays.
we love javier’s. their steak cantinflas is to die for. well, you know how good cajeta is… i could probably make myself sick eating it with a spoon too!
Lovely recipe but I absolutely covet the cake stand and plates!
Got them from my mother. They’re French.
these look perfect!
Thank you! They’re pretty wonderful!
I’ve never heard of cajeta but it all looks heavenly.
If you like goat’s cheese, you’d love cajeta!!!
Oh wow! I love the idea of this sort of goat’s milk dulce de leche. Sounds dreamy, I’ve never worked with goat’s milk before, might use this as an excuse to give it a try!
The flavor is just so much better, to me, than cow’s milk!!! give it a try!
Luscious looking sauce for the crepes!
it is pretty damn luscious!
I’m with flippenblog re cake stand (if it is that – looks more suitable for dessert) and those plates. So charming!
thank so much. i just got them last year from my mother, who’s french, so i’m assuming the plates and stand are french as well…
Just wonderful! Thank you for using prepared crepes. I think they are so elevated by the sauce, why go to the trouble of making them first. I love this!
oh, sorry, but i did make them first! i just didn’t include a recipe cause I’d blogged aboout them first. i didn’t know you could buy prepared crepes! i do everything from scratch. it’s like a disease. but the cajeta is dynamite. fresh crepes or not!
Oh that’s so funny! It must have been my “wishful thinking” that read “prepared crepes” and jumped to those delightful little packages I see in the stores. Yes, you can buy them already prepared, although they’re expensive. I would have ordinarily assumed you made everything from scratch, but I was thinking of my own abilities–or is it liabilities? :-) Either way, I think they sound incredible!!
Oh my gosh they are so easy. And cheap! Plus you can add stuff to them to make them unique, like herbs, or tomato powder. For using them in sweet preparations, I just usually leave them as is, or add a little vanilla and a pinch of sugar!
Sent from my iPad, so please excuse typos
I just got some goat’s-milk caramel from my farmer’s market– will have to try it with this recipe!
These crepes look so thin and perfect :D
Thanks so much. Unfortunately, they WERE really goood!!!
Such stunning simplicity!
Sometimes simple is best, isn’t it?!!
This is something I’ll have to try. I really like the color of the cajeta when it’s done. You mention cans, but will fresh goat milk work?
oh yes. A can is just the only way I can purchase goat’s milk whereI live. No goat farms nearby, sadly!
Good, I’ll definitely try it then. We have fresh pasteurized goat’s milk at the supermarket.
Great post Mimi! I had never heard of cajeta before. I like the stronger taste of goats milk and heard it was easier to digest than cows milk due to the proteins being smaller..all good point for pure goat milk cajeta:-)
A wonderful excuse to try cajeta!
I’ve never heard of cajeta but it sounds delicious. While living in Malta, I had a Russian friend who used to simmer an UNOPENED can of condensed milk in hot water for a few hours – until the condensed milk turned into a caramel. The only problem… the can might explode….. ; o )
I just recently heard about this trick. It’s the same principle, I guess, except that the regular condensed, sweetened milk isn’t goat’s milk. But I think that also turns the canned stuff in caramel. Amazing, but scary.