October 9, 2014

Caramel Sauce

This is dangerous. So dangerous there is no picture of it. The entire batch was consumed in 24 hours. Caramel sauce usually requires quite a bit of attention, not necessarily time, and I'm still hit or miss at making perfect homemade caramel sauce. When I hit, it's sheer perfection in my mouth. When I miss, I set off smoke detectors and have a very sticky pan to clean with nothing delicious to show for it. Or I have underdone caramel because I'm afraid of the situation I described above.

Cookies and Cups found an easy way to get instant gratification, and I followed her lead. This is so simple, takes no more than 5 minutes and requires no skill. The result is a caramel sauce that certainly fills that need, although it's not nearly as rich or complex as the truer versions. I find it tastes best initially and gets a bit grainy when reheating. Still, that didn't prevent us from polishing off the leftovers. (But I'm trying to help you justify the entire batch disappearing at once.)

Caramel Sauce
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 tsp. salt (add more or less as desired)
1/2 tsp. vanilla

In a 4-cup microwave-safe glass bowl, combine melted butter, brown sugar and heavy cream, whisking until smooth. Microwave on high for 2 minutes, and remove to stir. Return to microwave, and heat for 2 more minutes until bubbly and slightly thickened.

Stir in salt and vanilla, and allow to cool until warm, not hot. Mixture will thicken as it cools. Serve warm. If caramel cools completely, reheat by placing in microwave for 20-25 seconds. Store any leftovers in the refrigerator. Makes about 1 1/2 cups of caramel.

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