Showing posts with label caramel. Show all posts
Showing posts with label caramel. Show all posts

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Caramel Sauce

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If I'm being completely honest, I've always had a biased opinion concerning caramel. I envision those gross hard-as-a-rock candies that people give you in gift bags. They're nasty. They're old. They're not anything I'm interested in making or eating.

Turns out you just have to wait for the right caramel to come along.

I have to admit that I've been holding out on sharing this recipe with you all for awhile. It's almost like I needed to keep it hidden in my heart; my own special miracle. But I decided it was against the Christmas spirit, and I am so for the Christmas spirit.

Fa-lah-lah-lah-lah....lah-lah, lah, laaaaaaaaaaaah.

So don't make me regret giving this to you, because it's insane. And incredible. And flawless. And I can drink it like soup. But please don't tell my health-nut husband that. He'll judge my lack of will power.

Ingredients:
  • 4 tablespoons of butter
  • 1 1/3 cups packed brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 tablespoon of salt
Directions:
  • This is going to be easy. Throw it all in a pot on the stove. Turn the heat on medium low (about a 6-scale). Whisk gently until ingredients are melted and combined (about 10 minutes if the butter was cold, or you can shred the butter to moves things along a little quicker).
  • Transfer the caramel to a sealable container and put it in the fridge to cool.
  • Stir well and top anything and everything with it. And lick the spoon a few times. Life is short, after all.
Honestly, this is so good that I've considered making large batches, filling up mason jars with it and giving them away as Christmas gifts to friends. Anyone would love this. Anyone.

Love and my best kept secret,
Rachael


Saturday, March 19, 2011

Triple caramel salted cupcakes

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First and foremost, I have to apologize for my long absence. It's been a week since I've posted, but that's only because this week has been positively terrible, stressful and never-ending. But cupcakes fix things, right?

I'm not going to lie to you. These are some of the best cupcakes I've ever had in my life, but they're not for the faint of heart. I worked on these over the course of two evenings. This recipe is the combination of two recipes: Sprinkle bakes triple salted caramel cupcakes and Pioneer woman's caramel sauce. If you're really adventurous (and talented, which I am not), you can stick solely with the Sprinkles caramel recipe. It's pretty complicated, and I managed to ruin my favorite little kitchen tool.

Apparently melted sugar requires metal kitchen tools. Boo on you, plastic.

So let's get started!

Cupcake ingredients (as copied from Sprinkle Bakes website):
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder 
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt 
  • 1 stick of unsalted butter, at room temperature 
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar 
  • 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla   
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tbsp. buttermilk
Cupcake directions (as copied from Sprinkle Bakes website): 
  •  Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line muffin tins with papers.
  • Combine flour, baking powder and salt; set aside
  • Cream butter and brown sugar on medium high speed until pale fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating until each is incorporated. 
  • Add vanilla. Mix and scrape down sides of bowl as needed.
  • Add flour mixture in three batches, alternating with two additions of buttermilk, and beating until combined after each.
  • Divide batter evenly among lined cups, filling each about halfway full. Bake for about 25 minutes.
  • When done, transfer tins to wire racks to cool for 10 minutes; turn out cupcakes onto racks and let cool completely.
  • Once cooled, cut out a small chunk in the middle of the cupcake. We're going to fill that with caramel sauce.
If you are ever required to make caramel, this is the recipe to use. I've tried so many, but I could drink this stuff. It's Pioneer Woman's easy caramel sauce, and it is absolutely divine. And easy. Which makes it even more divine.

Ingredients (as copied from Pioneer Woman's website):
  • 4 tbsp. butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 cup half and half
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla
Directions (as copied from Pioneer Woman's website):
  • Mix butter, brown sugar, half & half, and salt in a saucepan over medium low heat.
  • Cook while whisking gently for 5 to 7 minutes, until thicker.
  • Add vanilla and cook another minute to thicken further.
  • Turn off heat and pour sauce into a jar.
  • Refrigerate until cold 
  • Once the caramel sauce is cool, pour about a teaspoon of it into each of the cupcake holes you made, then "quark" the cupcake again with the chunk of cake you cut out.
Now onto the frosting. This is the most sinful part of this whole dessert, but let me tell you something — you have never tasted anything like this in your life. It's amazing.

Ingredients (as copied from Sprinkle bakes website):
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tbsp. water
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1 stick salted butter
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/2 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
Directions (as copied from Sprinkle bakes website):
  • In a mixer fitted with a paddle attachment (or just use your hand mixer), beat butter and salt together until lightened and fluffy. Reduce speed to low and add powdered sugar. Mix until thoroughly combined.
  • Scrape down the side of the bowl and add the caramel. Beat on medium high speed until light and airy, and completely mixed (about 2 minutes). Mixture should be ready to use without refrigeration. If your caramel was too hot when added, it will cause your icing to be runny. If this happens, refrigerate for 15-20 minutes.
  • Top caramel-filled cupcakes with frosting.
  • Top cupcake with a few "grains" of sea salt
So as you can see, this isn't the easiest cupcake recipe, but if you're up for a challenge, these are a-MAZING.

Love and caramel...and sea salt,
Rachael

    Sunday, September 19, 2010

    Monkey Bread

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    I'm sympathetic to a monkey's plight in life. They are hairy and have to endure onlookers' mimicking and mocking, all the while being caged in a zoo.

    But they're just so dang adorable.


    I mean, I could just take this one home with me.

    So it was only natural that when I was introduced to monkey bread-the perfect breakfast, dessert, or coffee companion-I absolutely had to try it.

    It turned out to be pretty much the best, most complicated-looking (but not complicated at all) dish I've made in a long time. Also, in case you were wondering, the reactions from my family were...

    "Oh...my...gosh..."

    "Kill me now."

    "I have never tasted anything so good in my life."

    Just in case you needed convincing.

    Ingredients:

    • 3 cans original biscuits
    • 1 1/2 cups sugar
    • 5 teaspoons cinnamon
    • Large Ziploc bag
    • 2 sticks butter
    • 1 cup brown sugar
    • 1 tsp vanilla extract




    First grab 3 cans of original biscuit. Do not get the flaky kind-it's something you'll come to regret. Or so I'm told. Lay them out on a cutting board. Cut them up like you would a pizza (into 8 pieces). You will have many many pieces. That's a good thing. Mine have weird little yellow flakes, which is apparently butter. This is good news!



    Fill a large ziploc bag with 1 1/2 cups sugar and about 5 teaspoons of cinnamon. Shake it up and add the biscuit pieces. Zip it back up and shake well until they're thoroughly coated.

    Spray a bundt cake pan and throw 'em in there. Now it's time to start the caramel sauce (pronounced ca-r-a-mel). NOT carmel.



    Melt 2 sticks of non-salted butter over medium high heat and add 1 cup of brown sugar and the vanilla.



    Now take my word for it and use a whisk, NOT a spoon. It seriously cuts a ton of time off this step if you use the whisk.



    Go ahead and pour the goodness over the biscuity cinnamony sugary chunks. Now let all the guilt leave your body. It's monkey bread. It's a part of nature. It's going to look like they're drowning. Don't try to save them. It's their destiny to die this phenomenal death.



    Throw it in the oven at 350 degrees for about 30 minutes. Keep an eye on it as every oven is different and it might take more or less time.



    Let it cool about 20 minutes and flip it onto a plate. Serve with coffee, ice cream, or as a warm breakfast.


    Come on, people. We eat donuts and chocolate muffins in this country for breakfast. Surely this should get the stamp of approval.

    **This dessert has been approved by Tim**

    Enjoy all!

    Love,

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