Caramel Sauce

This sauce is for the caramel lover—like myself! It’s equally wonderful over ice cream, yellow cake or apple pie. It is just thick enough when hot, but not clumpy or sticky as it cools on the plate. Don’t be afraid of making caramel. If you follow the simple but important rules below it will be easy. Do be careful when making it not to have any small children about and to give it your undivided attention. Caramel burns are extremely painful.

INGREDIENTS MEASURE WEIGHT
room temperature volume ounces grams
sugar 1 cup 7 ounces 200 grams
water ¼ liquid cup
heavy cream ½ liquid cup
unsalted butter 2 tablespoons 1 ounce 28 grams
pure vanilla extract 1 teaspoon

Method

Alternatively, place it in a pan of simmering water and heat, stirring occasionally, until warm, about 7 minutes.

In a heavy saucepan, with at least a 5-cup capacity (ideally with a nonstick lining) stir together the sugar and water until the sugar is completely moistened. Heat, stirring constantly, until the sugar dissolves and the syrup is bubbling. Stop stirring completely and allow the syrup to boil undisturbed until it turns a deep amber (about 370°F. on a candy thermometer). Immediately remove from the heat, and slowly and carefully pour the cream into the caramel. Be careful: It will bubble up furiously.

Use a wooden spoon to stir the mixture until smooth. If any lumps develop, return the pan to the heat and stir until they dissolve. Stir in the butter. The mixture will be streaky but will become uniform after cooling slightly and stirring.

Pour the caramel into a serving pitcher and allow it to cool for 5 minutes. Gently stir in the vanilla extract.

KEEPS: 3 days at room temperature, at least 3 months refrigerated. To reheat: Scrape it into a microwave-safe container and microwave on high power for 1 minute, stirring twice.
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