If you're looking for a homemade sweetened condensed milk recipe that tastes like your average can of Nestle or Carnation, this is it, albeit with some variations. Three stars because this is a fantastic, fool proof base recipe.
The key to any good homemade condensed milk is the use of evaporated milk. Evaporated milk is treated differently than whole milk and cream so it's imperative that you stick with it!
Anyways, so far I've made several variations of this, and found that 30 min, constantly stirring on medium heat will make this thick, but not fresh from the can consistency. Definitely more syrup-y.
What works for me, and has continued to work for me is using 1 cup light brown sugar or 3/4 cup dark brown sugar and 1/4 light brown sugar (I use the higher dark/light ratio for richer desserts)
Now before I came across this recipe, I used a recipe found on this cooking blog with similar ingredient ratios but a different cooking process. I tried their cooking method vs. this recipes and found the former created a thicker, richer condensed milk.
The key to getting your evaporated milk/sugar mixture rich and creamy is to constantly stir over medium heat until steam rises from your pot of choice (about 10 minutes). Continue to stir and reduce burner to it's lowest setting. Periodically stir milk/sugar mixture for about 1 hr until it's reduced to about half it's original amount. Pour into a clean glass/plastic container and allow to cool before refrigerating.
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If you're looking for a homemade sweetened condensed milk recipe that tastes like your average...