Caramel…. We all love to eat it or pour large quantities of it over cakes, biscuits, ice cream and probably any other delicious treat you can think of.
Earlier this week I decided to have a whirl and make a caramel sauce which I could incorporate into my classic cupcake recipe.
I’ve seen a few recipes for a good caramel sauce but this one stood out as it’s well worth the 5 minutes it took to whip up. The thing with caramel is the longer you leave it the thicker the sauce becomes, or so I found. For this reason I decided to make it and pour it into an airtight jar to thicken in the fridge overnight.
Here’s how I made the caramel:
In a pan over a medium heat, melt 75g unsalted butter, 50g light brown sugar, 50g caster sugar and 3 tablespoons of golden syrup. Let it simmer for around 3 minutes, stirring regularly.
Add 125ml double cream along with a pinch of good quality sea salt to the pan and stir well with a wooden spoon. Stir continuously to combine the mixture for another 1 – 2 minutes on the stove, it should have gone a lovely caramel shade, have a quick taste of it (being careful not to burn yourself) to make sure you’re happy with the balance. Then remove it from the heat and allow it to fully cool down. This is where I recommend pouring it into the jar and leaving it overnight. But if you fancy it warm then why not have some now. Entirely your choice.
As the caramel is so salty and sweet I didn’t want to mess around with the cupcakes too much as the focus here is on the caramel. I followed the basic cupcake recipe but substituted the caster sugar for light brown sugar to give it a darker colour.
If you’ve ever made butterfly cakes then this part is very similar, all I did was use a sharp knife to cut a hole out of the middle of each cupcake about a third deep. Into this hole I put a teaspoon of the thickened caramel sauce and then replaced the cut out section. I thought it would be a nice added touch to have the caramel sauce hidden inside as a surprise when you eat it. However as I found out, through my impatience, that if you don’t leave the caramel sauce to set long enough then it will soak into the cake itself. Leaving it in the fridge overnight solves this problem.
Again the butter icing is just a simple vanilla frosting as per my usual recipe. Let’s be honest you can’t go far wrong with butter icing as it is just softened butter and icing sugar.
For the finishing touches, drizzle some of that gorgeous caramel sauce over the top of the icing and serve.
Don’t worry if the caramel sauce doesn’t go right first time it can be a bit temperamental…. Sometimes it works sometimes it doesn’t… still though it’s worth the effort!