Ditch the Mix

Homemade Caramel Sauce and Salted Caramel Sauce

**Updated the Pancake Post with some delicious Buttermilk Pancakes.  The Best non-whole wheat pancake I have tried.
**Updated the Shortbread Cookie recipe with an easier method of making/baking the cookies into a traditional wedge shape.

I needed some caramel sauce for my sister’s birthday Turtle Cake but I was too lazy to go to the store.  Here is the recipe I used and photos of most of the process.  Caramel burns very easily and quickly, so towards the end I don’t have a photo of when I took it off the stove.  I can’t wait to use this in the Caramel Apple Cheesecake Bars!

A while back I made Salted Caramel Brownies.  The middle layer is made from salted caramel sauce and that is the second recipe.  It is yummy as well all on its own and without the brownie!

Caramel Sauce
yield about 1/2-1 cup

1/4 cup water
1 cup sugar
1 Tb. light corn syrup
1/2  cup heavy cream
2 Tb. unsalted butter, soft and cubed
1/2 tsp. fine grain sea salt
1 tsp. vanilla extract

1.  Preparation during candy making is really helpful.  Have everything out, pre-measured and ready to go.  You want the cream to not be straight out of the fridge, so letting it sit out will help.  You will also need a high sided, heavy bottom 3 or 5qt. stainless pot – not non-stick – and a wooden spoon or heat resistant spatula (like silicone).  A candy thermometer is helpful, though not essential.
2.  Pour water into pot and pour the sugar into the middle.  Add light corn syrup.  Gently stir together so the sugar is moistened.  You don’t want sugar water up the sides of the pan.  Heat at medium-low to medium heat.

3.  Continue to gently stir occasionally until the water begins to boil.   When the mixture begins to turn amber you can gently swirl the mixture using the handle on the pot.  Very gently and just once in a while to get the mixture heated evenly.

4.  Once the mixture hits 340 degrees on the candy thermometer, or golden brown – Remove from heat IMMEDIATELY.  Here is a website that has all the photos.  I usually pull it off the heat just before it gets to stage 5 to avoid burning.  The residual heat cooks it the rest of the way.

5.  Off the heat, slowly stir in the cream.  It will bubble a lot and that is okay.  Add the butter and salt.  Once incorporated add the vanilla.

Store room temp. for 3 days or 3 weeks in the fridge.  The mixture will get thick in the fridge just like the canned stuff from the store.  That is okay – just throw it in the microwave to soften for a few seconds.

Salted Caramel Sauce
yield about 1/2-1 cup

1/4 cup water
1 cup sugar
2 Tb. light corn syrup
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 tsp. fine grain sea salt (I used fleur de sel)
1/4 cup sour cream

1.  Very similar to above.  Stir the water, sugar and corn syrup gently in a high sided pot.  Heat over medium-low to medium heat.  After bubbles start, swirl the pan until 340 degrees and/or light amber/dark brown in color.
2.  Remove from heat and slowly add in cream.   Add in salt then whisk in the sour cream.  Cool and eat.

Recipe from Baked Explorations under “Sweet and Salty Brownies”


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