Every year at Christmas time, I love to bake a ton of goodies to give away to friends and family. This year, I had a bit of a hard time getting in the Christmas spirit and just couldn’t think of anything to make. After listening to some Christmas music and spending some time browsing the internet, I had a good solid list of things to make and got to work. But, then every couple of days I would find another recipe I wanted to add, and another, and another!
This was one of those last-minute additions. I love, love, love salted caramel, but never thought of making my own sauce and packaging it up as a gift, until I saw Shawnda do just that. I doubled the recipe and reluctantly gave it to some local family and friends, keeping a good portion for my self.
I have been enjoying this sauce right out of the jar on top of a big mug of hot chocolate topped with whipped cream, nearly every night. I also made a batch of my favorite brownies with a couple of tablespoons of the salted caramel sauce swirled in. While I didn’t quite get the swirl effect I was going for, they were the fudgiest, richest brownies I have ever made, with just a hint of caramel flavor. You could really use this sauce in or on anything that would taste good with caramel. Ice cream, french toast, pancakes… the possibilities are endless!
Salted Caramel Sauce
- 1 vanilla pod (or 1 tablespoon of vanilla bean paste)
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 5 Tbsp unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- 2 tsp fleur de sel
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1/4 cup light corn syrup
- 1/4 cup water
Use a knife and slit the vanilla pod in half along the length of the bean, stopping about 1/2 inch from the end (this way, the pod stays in tact for easy retrieval and disposal). Scrape each side of the pod with the knife and place the beans and pod in a small sauce pan. Add cream, butter, and fleur de sel to the sauce pan and warm until boiling. Turn off heat and set aside.
Boil sugar, corn syrup, and water in a 3- to 4-quart heavy saucepan, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Boil, without stirring but gently swirling pan, until mixture is a golden caramel.
Pluck vanilla pod from the cream mixture and carefully add the cream mixture to the caramel (mixture will bubble up) and simmer, stirring frequently, for 3 minutes. Pour into heat-safe glass measuring cup or dish (that can accommodate approx 3 cups). Let sit until cool. Pour into small glass jars and store in the fridge. Warm the sauce when ready to use.
Makes ~2 cups of caramel sauce.
Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride.