Me: “That coffee smells amazing.”
Colleague: “I know, it’s a salted caramel latte.”
Me: “I love salted caramel. I’ve heard it’s so easy to make.”
Colleague: “Make? What do you mean?”
Me: “Yeah, it’s just sugar, cream and butter. Although I wish it was like maple syrup and could be tapped from a tree.”
Colleague (laughing): “That would be perfect. Salted caramel tapping!”
And then a week later, after this very sweet conversation. My colleague left our company to start a fabulous new job elsewhere. So as a parting gift, I decided to make her a small jar of salted caramel (pictured below). You know because I’m nice (and modest) like that. This also happened to be two weeks before my parents were flying in. They are ice cream fiends and I figured the salted caramel would be the perfect dessert their first night in topped off with some toasted nuts for extra texture.
I’ve made caramel countless times for this Mexican lime and vanilla flan I make, but have never tried making it solely for the product itself. This was a good opportunity, and I scoured the Internet before settling on the recipe from Brown Eyed Baker. Her step by step instructions with images made it extremely easy to follow. I have to admit, it did turn out a little burnt in my opinion (my colleague was too nice to admit to that) and should have been pulled off the stove a little earlier. However, a couple of weeks later I assisted another colleague with the recipe and managed the right timing. We devoured some of the hot caramel over grilled bananas and were in a happy sugar high for hours after,
In my opinion, err on the lighter side rather than the darker of caramelization, as the flavour goes bitter pretty quick. But bitter or not, the night I tried it out for the first time I enjoyed a whole apple drizzled in the salted caramel. I had a particularly rough Monday the following week and treated myself to two (not one, but two!) bowls of ice cream topped with the salted caramel and toasted almonds (pictured). I tricked myself into thinking it was a test run before my folks arrived. My colleague loved the gift and was stealing spoonfuls of it the entire time we were at the office that day, so I’m going to hope that little bottle was empty before the week was out.