Happy Friday everyone! I hope this week wasn't too strenuous on you all. As you know, I am the Director of Sales for a hotel and let me just tell you that this week was a doozy. In the service industry, you have to deal with all sorts of "difficult"people and this week happened to be filled with them. I absolutely love what I do but let me just say that I am mentally exhausted and so ready for the weekend!
Now can we take a minute to talk about this recipe? When I told my mom that I was going to post this recipe she said "No! Don't do it! You could sell that stuff someday!" This caramel sauce is that good.
It also is the perfect gift. I have made jars of this and given it to people for Christmas, wedding showers, housewarming, birthdays, just-because, and I even sent two jars of it in with my husband when he started a new job! Throw a label on, tie it with a pretty little gingham ribbon and you have some homemade love that anyone will appreciate.
If you plan on making this, be sure to read the recipe from start to finish. I realize working with hot sugar can be a bit terrifying but I tried to include as many helpful tips as possible. And if you mess up, no biggie. Before mastering this recipe, I burned and under cooked the sauce multiple times!
It is the prefect time of the year to make this as it pairs so well with your typical fall desserts. It is also really good with just a spoon, standing by the fridge with the door wide open. Enjoy my friends.
Pour into mason jars and refrigerate overnight.
Salted Caramel Sauce
3 cups sugar
1 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 1/4 cups water
2 2/3 cups heavy cream, at room temperature
Place large stock pot on oven but do not turn on heat just yet. Add sugar, salt, vanilla and water.
Whisk all ingredients together until combined then turn heat on to medium high.
At this point, you do not need the whisk until the end. Just use your two hands to swirl the sugar mixture around in the pot. You will go through a few stages over the course of about 10 minutes; sugar dissolving, the clear liquid beginning to develop bubbles, the bubbles getting smaller/thinner but covering the surface and the sugar turning to a caramel color. I tried to capture all of the stages through the photos.
Once the sugar has turned to a caramel color, whisk in the cream and turn off heat. It will bubble vigorously but keep whisking. The sugar will harden (but not as much if the cream is near room temp) but keep whisking. If the sugar is not loosening up, turn heat on low to melt the sugar into the cream. Eventually, the mixture will be completely homogeneous, albeit very thin. Don't worry as it will thicken up when it is refrigerated.
- There is a fine line between the caramel being "blonde" and "burnt" (I've experienced both).
- Over time, you will know the exact moment in which to add the cream. If I had to describe it, I would say that the sugar has very small bubbles, a deep caramel color and gives off the aroma of a rich caramel.
- Use a big pot. You don't want the sugar to boil over or it may result in both burns and messes.
- Keep swirling the sugar mixture and never walk away from the pot. It really only takes a few seconds for this stuff to burn.
- If you are nervous, cut the recipe in half... that way if you mess up, you don't feel as bad about wasting all of the ingredients.
- This recipe makes about enough to fill 2 standard size mason jars (with a little bit leftover to snack on!)