Monterey House Candy (Leche Quemada - Burnt Milk Fudge)

I've searched for this recipe for literally years. They used to give to away at Monterey House in Dickinson, TX. I've made countless pans of what usually turns into semi-burnt caramel. I did find this exact candy at Las Palmas here in Springdale, but they seldom have it. They don't have a recipe. They claim they GO TO MEXICO and buy it from someone there, and bring it back?! Seriously useless. But here it is- someone from Dickinson gave out this recipe and I'm going to try it. You may all get some for Christmas this year if it works out. And if you don't absolutely LOVE it, please just send it back and I will eat it- somehow. NEVER LET IT GO TO WASTE!!!
5 pounds sugar
4 12-oz cans evaporated milk
1 12-oz can evaporated goat’s milk (or substitute evaporated milk)
2 cups light corn syrup
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon Mexican vanilla extract
4 tablespoons butter

Put sugar, evaporated milk, evaporated goat’s milk, corn syrup and salt in a large heavy pot. Attach a candy thermometer to the pot. Cook on medium-low heat for 1 hour, stirring often with a wooden spoon. The temperature should rise slowly but steadily. Increase heat to medium-high and cook, stirring constantly, for 20 minutes. Increase heat to high and cook, again, stirring constantly--make sure to scrape the burned bits off the bottom as they develop--until the the temperature reaches 245 degrees. Immediately remove pot from heat, stir in vanilla and butter and continue to stir mixture occasionally as it cools.
When the candy cools to 180 degrees then transfer to a buttered 9 x 12" baking pan. Cool slightly, cutting into bars while still pliable. Cool completely before serving.


  1. So - was this THE Monterrey House Candy at the bottom of the tortilla chips basket?!

    Thanks, Kevin

  2. NO- sorry I didn't realize you'd commented! I'm thinking THE Monterey House candy is "penuche fudge"- Martha Stewart has a recipe, and there's some others floating around online. I plan to try it next!

  3. My father, Jesse Bocanegra made the candy for Monterey House in the 60s and early-mid 70s. We just started selling it again on a very small scale from home but are seriously considering going back into business later this year. We will be making a batch this Thursday night. Let me know if you are interested in ordering.

    Have a great night and God Bless.

    Gina Bocanegra

    1. Hi Gina. I hope you get this message fast! Bluebell ice cream came out with a new flavor this year. It is called" Mexican Praline". I tried it and voila!!! It had pieces of the same candy I used to eat at Monterey House when I was a kid! Oh my gosh, how I have missed that exquisite flavor! Anyway, Bluebell makes the candy themselves and wouldn't tell me where they got the recipe but they did send me a coupon for a free half gallon. Lol! The point I'm getting to is that this ice cream is literally killing me. No joke! I've put on 20 lbs, my arteries are clogging up, and my bad cholesterol is sky high simply because I'm addicted to Monterey House candy and have to eat all that ice cream to get it. Please! Save a life! I've tried every recipe on the web except the last one that's the most trouble and I'm going to try it out today. Please contact me if you get this in a timely manner, otherwise, say a prayer for me cause I'll be a goner!

    2. Hello Sherry!

      I just saw your response and have added you to our E-Blast which will give you all the information you need to know about when the candy will be available. The E-Blast will be coming from

      Have a wonderful week!

      Gina Bocanegra

    3. Please email me details on how to order your candy.

    4. Gina, i live in The Woodlands and we had a Monterrey House here in the 70s and know many of the kids I went to school with cherished that candy. If you have a link to purchase it, I will happily put it on my Facebook page and I'm sure you can expect tons of orders from my reminiscent high school friends.

    5. THANK YOU again Gina! I've let all my friends know :) <3

    6. I'd be interested on ordering. It was late 60's, early 70's in Te,as City

  4. Gina,
    I knew your father back then when he was making it at home in Denver Harbor. We used to talk and visit late into the evening. Me being a dumb gringo, I found out that my beer and his candy did not mix too well. Lol. I am sure he knew my sister and brother-in-law Jane and Hal Antee. Good luck on your new venture. That candy was the best and I wish I had some more.
    Tommy Walker

  5. I recently discovered "Butter Fudge" from World Market. It comes in a box. It taste EXACTLY like Monterey House candy. ENJOY!!!

    1. Yes or you can order directly from the original purveyor who commented above too! <3

  6. A friend recently brought some UK Tablet (butter fudge) candy back from Scotland and it tastes very similar to the Monterey House candy, so the comment above about World Market may be the place to go.
    You can find several recipes using the key words above.

  7. Help! The font is too pale; I can't read this. Need recipe or ordering info! Wish I had it before Christmas Eve!

  8. If you want the real deal visit their FB page:
    La Colmena Mexican Candy Mfg. Co. was well known for their authentic gourmet Leche Quemada also known as Mexican “milk candy,” as well as their Pralines, sold at Monterey House, Felix Mexican Restaurants and many other locations in the greater Houston area, Galveston and Richmond, Texas. Before the company closed their doors in the mid 1970s, Jesse Bocanegra, was the 3rd generation of master candy makers in the Bocanegra-Miranda family who owned the company. At 78 years old now, he still resides in Houston and has been teaching his youngest daughter how to create his one-of-a-kind “Sweet Blessings.”
    List of restaurants and locations selling La Colmena candy from the 1950s-1970s:

    Monterey House
    Felix Mexican Restaurants
    Santa Anita
    Leo's Mexican Restaurant
    El Patio
    Mexico Way
    Old Mexico Taverna
    Martin's Mexican Restaurant
    Sarabias Curio Shop
    Las Casuelas
    La Consentida
    Arturo's Mexican Restaurant
    The Green Leaf Café
    Los Tio's
    Adoph's Mexican Restaurant
    La Providencia
    La Placita Restaurant #1
    La Placita Restaurant #2 (Pasadena)
    Larry's Mexican Restaurant (Richmond TX)
    El Original (Galveston, TX)
    Loma Linda (Galveston, TX)
    Moreno's Mexican Restaurant (Baytown, TX)
    Los Toros (Baytown, TX)

    1. OHHHHHHH! Mexicatessen! I almost grew up there, my mamma knew the owners and we ate there all the time! I moved to Sweden almost 20 years ago and was heartbroken to hear of their problems and closing, and that, like Astroworld, my Swedish family will never get to experience it!!

  9. Just made this recipe! This is the real stuff! Mine definitely didn't turn out quite as well or as beautiful as Mr. Bocanegra's, but I'm planning to keep working on it! Thank you for sharing!

  10. Was there goat's milk in the Monterey House candy back in the day?


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