Confessions and Salted Caramel

Before I begin my caramel confessions, I must pre-confess (is that a thing?) that it’s been a number of weeks since I last worked on my blog and I must apologize. I got sick with strep throat twice! Who knew one could have a penicillin-resistant strain of strep and then I got busy with my daughter’s birthday and then Valetine’s day. But, I had to get my butt back in blogging gear as I didn’t want it falling by the wayside, getting further into the year… dusted and forgotten. So, I’m back! Now, let’s continue.

Confession #7238: I’m not a fan of caramel–

*gasp! shock! horror!*

I know. How could someone who makes sweet things for a living not love caramel?? Well, I just always thought it was a little… too sweet. Like, cloyingly sweet. I mean, I’m not a huge sweets person in general–gasp again! I know, I know. Now, don’t get me wrong. I love desserts; pastries, pies, chocolate, that sort of thing, but candies and confections? Nah. Not my bag, baby.

Confession #2739: I never made my own caramel until a few months ago–

RIGHT?! I know. I’m embarrassed to even tell you that, but it’s true. I was terrified of making my own caramel. I’d have visions of burning my sugar and my home down which sent me straight to the store-bought stuff. I’m not knocking the store stuff, by the way. Some are great, but most are just too sweet for my tastebuds. Which is probably where my meh-ness towards caramel stemmed from–I just never had good caramel. Like, the creamy, dreamy, amber glowing good stuff that you only get from handmade batches of caramel.

What finally pushed me to try my hand at making my own caramel was the addition of salt. Salted caramel is big. HUGE. Like, it’s everywhere and been everywhere for a good number of years now. Oh, I just love a good salted caramel latte…

It’s beyond the point of just a trend. Salted caramel is here to stay and for good reason–it’s effing amazing!!! ‘Scuse my language. It’s just so next level that it blows my mind at how one little addition of salt can take a really great caramel to unexpected heights. It’s simply incredible!

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That’s gold, Jerry. Gold!

If you’ve never had salted caramel before, you haven’t lived, my friend. I’m telling you, it’s a game-changer. Like, the first time I made my own, I was like, why didn’t I do this before?? I’d been missing out on greatness and this is coming from someone who wasn’t even a fan of caramel! Now, I just love it.

This salted caramel is very versatile. Add it to buttercream, fill cakes or cupcakes with it. Sandwich it between cookies or drizzle it on cheesecakes. Or just grab a spoon and call it a day. No shame.

Things to note about this recipe:

  • It has 4 ingredients. That’s it. I love me a simple recipe and this hits it out of the park.
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  • Now, this is salted caramel, but should you wish to omit the salt, you can, but man, let me tell you, you’d be missing out BIG TIME. Just sayin’.
  • Since it requires only 4 ingredients, the quality of ingredients does matter. This goes for anything really. The better the quality of ingredients the better the final product. When it comes to the salt do not, I repeat, do not use table salt. Trust me. The taste will be… off. Like bitter tasting and just… too salty!! It won’t be good. I’m speaking from experience so, learn from my mistakes. Fleur de sel is preferred but any nice sea salt works. Use the good stuff! Go on, treat yo’self!
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    Look at those lovely little flakes. Aren’t they pretty?
  • When making caramel, you have to be ever-present. Don’t walk away from it, don’t get distracted. Film your insta stories later*–literally, this takes about 10 minutes from start to finish, so give it your attention.
  • Use a saucepan large enough to accommodate the caramel taking into account the bubbling from adding the butter and heavy cream
  • Some use a whisk, others swirl or use a wooden spoon. I use a silicone spatula to stir my sugar (heat resistant), but that’s my personal preference.
  • You’ll need a vessel to store your precious salted caramel and there’s no better vessel than the mason jar. Yes, the beloved child of Etsy and Pinterest has so many uses, but we’re bringing it back to basics and using it to hold and preserve your beautiful salted caramel. So grab a clean and sanitized jar and have it ready.Β  This makes about 2 cups so make sure your jar is big enough.
  • Lastly, before tackling any recipe, read through the whole recipe first and then have your mise en place set

You ready? Let’s gooooo!

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(Best Ever!) Salted Caramel Sauce
Prep time: 2 minutes
Cook time: 10 minutes
Yields: About 2 Cups

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 12 Tablespoons unsalted butter, room temp, cut into pieces
  • 1 cup heavy cream, room temp
  • 2 teaspoons* fleur de sel or other sea salt

Directions:

  1. In a medium sized saucepan, add your sugar and heat over medium heat.Stir constantly as it begins to melt. The sugar will begin to form clumps, and this is what it’s supposed to do. Just keep stirring till all the sugar has melted.
  2. Remember what I said? Give it your attention. You’ve reached a vital part to the caramel and you’re only on step 2! Keep cooking the sugar till it reaches a deep amber colour (deep reddish brown/orange colour. See photos for reference) and has a slight toasted aroma. Watch it closely! Your sugar can go from perfection to burnt in seconds.
  3. Once your caramel has reached it’s deep amber colour, add all of your butter. The butter will cause the caramel to bubble so be careful. Stir until the butter has completely melted then remove your pan from the heat.
  4. Slowly pour the cream into the caramel. Be careful as the caramel will bubble rapidly. Stir the caramel till the cream has been thoroughly incorporated.
  5. Add the fleur de sel and stir to incorporate.

Your sauce will look a bit thin while it’s still hot but it will thicken up so let that baby cool for at least 15 minutes before pouring into your glass jar (and stealing a spoonful for yourself!).

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This salted caramel is still cooling. See how it coats the spoon? Still a little translucent.
Let it cool to room temp before storing it in the fridge. This baby can be refrigerated for up to 1 month.

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This one has fully cooled to room temp. The spoon is nicely coated with the thickened salted caramel. Yum!
Notes:

  • Salt–I’ve made this with various measurements of salt, from 1 tsp to 1 Tablespoon and I my personal preference is 2 teaspoons. If this is your first rodeo, try it out with 2. If you like it a little saltier, you could always increase your salt in another batch–and trust me, you’ll want to make more of this stuff πŸ˜‰
  • About those Insta Stories… I did record an insta story (or two) while making this stuff and I came very close–too close–to burning my caramel. So, don’t do it, folks. Don’t be like me!

Adapted fromΒ The Brown-Eyed BakerΒ andΒ Sally’s Baking Addiction
Guess what? You did it! You’ve made your own salted caramel sauce! Woohoo! Go you!

Now leave me a comment and tell me if you waited the full 15 minutes before stealing a taste πŸ˜‰

Happy eating!

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