After my misadventures with the Baking for Kids book, I continued baking. Not a lot and with little variety. Until I got my first ‘proper’ job and with it, the awesomeness that is ‘Bake Friday’.
‘Bake Friday’ was the highlight of my week. Everyone on the team took turns bringing in baked goods for the rest of the office. It is a great way to get people socialising after a long week, over a coffee and some treats. It’s great for morale & team bonding and I highly recommend it, especially to people working in traditional, bureaucratic organisations.
That was when I began taking baking seriously. I set myself a goal to not present the same thing twice. On one occasion, while looking for ideas, I came across a recipe for salted caramel cupcakes.
It was an instant hit with me. The balance of salty & sweet and that dark hint of burnt sugar. It keeps for weeks in the fridge and can be used on ice cream, macarons, cakes, tarts.. anything really!
This was the foundation of my Snickers cake on Episode 1 of The Great Irish Bake Off. It went down pretty okay with Biddy, a judge, describing it as ‘luscious’.
I give the people what they need…
SALTED CARAMEL SAUCE
You Will Need:
200 grams sugar
60 ml water
85 grams unsalted butter (diced, room temperature)
120 ml double cream (room temperature)
1/2 tbsp sea salt
*Measure all ingredients beforehand as you’ll need to work quickly
In a medium-sized saucepan, mix sugar & water and place on low-medium heat until sugar dissolves (you can stir gently to incorporate)
Once sugar is dissolved, brush down any sugar crystals on the sides of the pan with a wet pastry brush then increase heat to high, do not stir and allow to cook until sugar is a deep golden colour and you just start to smell smoke/burning
Quickly add in butter (it may bubble up, so be careful), whisk until it is incorporated and remove from the heat
Add the cream slowly, whisking continuously (it may bubble up here too) until the cream is incorporated, then add in salt and stir to combine.
Allow to cool for 10 minutes then pour into a jar and refrigerate. It’ll keep well for about a month.