I’ve always been a dedicated advocate of adding a good bit of salt to sweet desserts. Salt acts as a foil for sugar: it tames it and emphasizes it all at once. And while any dessert should have some salt, I love desserts that boldly highlight the salty side of sweet. Salted caramel has been all the rage for a while now. We’ve seen it various forms: ice creams, chocolate bars, and even the occasional latte. But I’m most interested in salted caramel in its purest state.
Caramel is one of those recipes that often intimidates the novice cook but it’s really not as difficult as one might think. My directions below are fool-proof. They only require that you pay full attention throughout the cooking process (no running off to answer the door or call a friend). You can use this caramel for pretty much anything but I love it paired with a simple scoop of vanilla ice cream.
You will need: ½ cup of sugar, ½ cup of heavy cream, 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, ½ teaspoon kosher salt.
Over medium-high heat, bring sugar and ¼ cup of water to a boil in a small saucepan.
Continue boiling, swirling the pan occasionally, for 8-10 minutes until mixture turns a deep amber color.
Remove from heat. Add cream slowly (mixture will bubble furiously – don’t be alarmed!)
Return to medium heat and stir until mixture is smooth (about 2 minutes). Remove from heat and stir in butter and salt.
Pour caramel into a heatproof container and allow to cool before using. Store in the fridge for up to 5 days.
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