If you’ve jumped onto the salted caramel craze and devoured all manner of salted caramel goodies, – chocolates (Bohemien), ice-cream (try Kohu Road), crepes (caramel sale crepe at La Forchette) and macaron (J’aime les macaron), you know just how addictive the flavour is.
Here’s an easy recipe on how to make your own salted caramel sauce to pour over desserts (like the homemade pavlova below), ice-creams and use in baking. This also makes an excellent gift. After burning way too many batches, I finally found a way to make fool-proof salted caramel sauce. This method takes a bit longer, but it works!
The trick is control the caramelization by dissolving the sugar in water first. If you don’t have a very good quality pot with a heavy base that heats evenly (like me), the no-water method will result in burnt sugar on hot spots on the pan. Even the tiniest amount of burnt sugar will ruin your sauce. Here are the tips:
- Dissolve the sugar with some water, – this will mitigate hot spots in your pan and ensure all sugar crystals have dissolved (optional, – a tablespoon of glucose syrup will stop caramel sauce seizing)
- Use warmed cream (the colder the cream, the more spluttering you’ll get)
- Use a candy thermometer, – the syrup needs to reach 170°C.
- Sieve the sauce to remove any sugar crystals
Ingredients (makes 3 cups):
2 cups white sugar (either granulated or caster)
½ cup water
1 cup cream, warmed to room temperature
60g butter, cut into small pieces
1 tbsp Maldon sea salt
2 sterile jars or bottles
Place a medium saucepan with a heavy bottom onto medium heat. Pour in the sugar and the water. Stir gently to dissolve the sugar crystals. Ensure all the sugar is totally dissolved.
Put in the candy thermometer, and heat the sugar syrup for ~10 minutes, bubbling as the water evaporates. Do not stir, just swirl the pan to move the syrup around if required. Take out your spatula, rinse and dry well. You want to make sure there are no sugar crystals on the spatula which can cause the caramel to seize later. (You cannot re-melt seized caramel, – trust me, I’ve tried). Some recipes also add in a tablespoon of glucose syrup to stop this from happening.
While you wait, warm the cream in the microwave. Cut butter into small pieces.
As the temperature increases, the, the clear syrup will take on a golden hue, initially around the edges. Swirl the saucepan gently to enable even cooking. The syrup will bubble furiously and will spit, – syrup which hits the wall of the saucepan will crystallise.
When the temperature reaches 165°C, take it off the heat. The temperature will continue to increase. Once it hit 170°C, pour in the warmed cream, and stir furiously. It will gradually incorporate.
Then stir in the Maldon salt and butter. The syrup will take on a glossy appearance.
Cool for 10 minutes. Using a small sieve, pour the sauce into the prepared jars or bottles. Store in the fridge for up to a month.