Hopdoddy, the fast-casual burger restaurant and bar in Scottsdale has taken two things we love, the milk shake and tres leches cake, blended them together and presented heaven in a cup. If you would like a serving of your own, be sure to get there by Sunday before their drink special ends.
Tres leches cake is, by definition, three-milk cake. It is disputed where the cake actually originated--some say Nicaragua, some say Mexico. We say it doesn't matter because it is simply delicious. It is reported that the Néstle company would print recipes on the labels of its canned milk to promote the use of the milk, and the recipe for tres leches was one of them. Evaporated milk, condensed milk and heavy cream are combined and poured on top of a sponge cake after it has been baked.
Holes are made on top of the cake with either a fork or skewer, the milk is poured over the surface, and is left to sit for about half an hour so the cake can absorb the moisture evenly. The cake literally acts as a sponge and holds all three milks to maintain a pleasant texture without it becoming mushy. If it's mushy, then you know you've got a bad batch.
Once the cake has soaked (it's especially good when it's been cooled in the refrigerator), it is topped with a light vanilla frosting and adorned with a cherry and usually a few pieces of strawberry.
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Now imagine all that in a cup. Hopdoddy gives a fresh take on the Latin dessert without any injustice. The shake is made of fresh baked yellow cake, homemade caramel and cajeta sauce, and macerated strawberries all blended with Hopdoddy's vanilla ice cream. It is topped with whip cream and more cajeta sauce and a few more slices of bright red strawberry. Accompanying the shake is a large boba-like straw so the cake and strawberry chunks get caught in the straw.
Before you shake your head in disapproval, has anyone ever said cookie dough chunks didn't belong in ice cream? We didn't think so. The shake we sampled was a beautiful sight. It was dense and sweet, but it definitely did not cross the line of giving us a cavity. If you're with a group, we recommend ordering your own because you will not want to share. With a shake packed with that many products, we were pleasantly surprised that it didn't make us feel heavy or stuck after downing it.
May we also recommend pairing the tres leches shake with Hopdoddy's seven-layer burger, a spin on the seven-layer burrito. It tastes more like a tostada than a burrito, which we're totally okay with. Both the burger and the shake complement one another and balance out the palette. But again, this shake is only available until Sunday, so if you want in on the action, you best act quickly.