Today the ambrosial caress of autumn and it’s balmy breeze is present. This chill commands the aid of a gleaming and crackling log in the fireplace albeit I like a good shortcut and opt for the easy to light duraflame log. There is currently an aromatic battle in our home between the cinnamon broomstick and autumn leaf candles aflame however it will soon be won over by the sweet fragrance of hot sugar caramelizing on the stovetop.
After making a surplus of 14 dozen soft caramels last week through the wet caramel method I decided to try my hand at the ever more challenging dry method. The dry method of caramel is great for making brittles, I however want the caramel to be a syrup capable of percolating from a squeeze bottle, this is achieved with the addition of heavy cream. With caramel syrup I can flavor lattes, hot chocolate, dress my pancakes, cupcakes, ice cream, cheesecake, brownies, sweet potato casserole… And the list goes on!
For a refresher on Caramel here’s a short bit from my post last week on Salted Vanilla Bean Soft Caramels:
“Dry method: Melting small amounts of sugar and gradually adding in the remaining sugar without stirring. In this form the sugar is caramelizing as soon as it melts. Adding a touch of acid like lemon juice will prevent crystallization of sugars. This is usually used for caramel sauces like in flan.
Wet method: Combining many ingredients including but not limited to sugar, corn syrup, milk products and butter in a sauce pot. The ingredients are then cooked down to evaporate the liquids. In the wet method corn syrup will prevent the crystallization of sugars as well and provide chewy-ness. Only the wet method allows you to reach the various stages of sugar.”
Recipe Yeild: 1&1/2 cups
A few quick words:
Do Not Ever try to taste your hot caramel it could be up to 340 degrees, if it is burnt it will be 350 degrees. Also always tuck in your handles into the stove, lord forbid the sugar spills on you or a child tries to grab the handle.
1 cup Granulated White Sugar
1/4 cup Heavy Whipping Cream
3 Tbs Pumpkin Pie Filling
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 tsp Allspice
•In a 2qt sauce pot at medium heat start melting the sugar 1/4 cup at a time. Do Not stir, if you feel the absolute need to touch the pot you can shake it lightly but this is a hands off type of recipe as we want the sugars to develop flavor and color through caramelization. (This will take about 10 minutes total)
•After you’ve added the last of your sugar, microwave the heavy cream for about a minute so that it is steaming.
•Once all of the sugar is melted immediately remove it from heat. The burn point of sugar happens within seconds. (My first try I forgot to pull the pan off of the burner and I turned around to grab my whisk and as I turned back my sugars had started to boil and burned within those two seconds. You will know because of the smoke, color and smell.)
•Very slowly whisk in the steaming cream in a thin stream as not to seize the sugar. The cream must be hot so it doesn’t curdle. The whole 1/4 cup of the cream may not need to be used, add to the consistency you desire and remember the pumpkin will thin the caramel a bit.
•Whisk in the Pumpkin Pie filling and spices.
•As the caramel cools it will thicken slightly.
•Store in an airtight container. I keep mine in a squeeze bottle for ease of application.
This recipe was made in our home and we hope it makes its way into yours. If you’ve any questions please leave a comment below. -Katie Bonzer