The introduction to salted caramel was the lasting effect from that little Starbucks addiction. I had never experienced "good" salt up until that point-- just the normal stuff that came in the round can with the cute little umbrella girl on the front. Also, my definition of caramel was tied in with bad Halloween candy and a coating for apples that you buy on a stick at the fair. Shortly thereafter, I got turned on to the world of food blogging. At that point in time, salted caramel recipes floated around the blog world-- ice cream, cakes, brownies, shortbreads, cupcakes. If you can name it, there was a salted caramel version.
I made this recipe because I needed a topping for a chocolate cake I made for a dinner last week... I'll share the recipe for the chocolate cake soon! The (very slight) coffee flavor comes from a teaspoon of double espresso vodka I added to the sauce. You certainly can substitute vanilla extract if you prefer a more traditional caramel flavor.
- 1/2 cup of half and half
- 1 cup of brown sugar
- 1 sprinkle of sea salt (preferably Fleur de Sel, but you can make it work with what you have on hand)
- 4 tablespoons of butter
- 1 tablespoon of coffee liqueur (I used Van Gogh's Double Espresso Vodka)
Combine the first four ingredients in a saucepan over medium low heat, stirring gently. When butter is melted, whisk for approximately 6 minutes, allowing the sauce to thicken slightly. Add coffee liqueur, and whisk again for one minute. Pour into glass container-- preferably one with a lid-- and set in the refrigerator to cool for at least one hour. Serve over baked goods, drizzled on popcorn, or used as a dip for fruit.
Also, a little food photography tip: two sheets of white poster board make pictures infinitely better. It lets the food shine without distracting the viewer with a busy background! Editing was done with PicMonkey.com.