Salute to caramel

On Saturday we had a flat warming at our new place. We decided that instead of making dinner for everyone (because we didn't know many people were coming) we asked everyone to bring some takeaways to share. Yes, a pot luck takeaway night. It worked out really well, we got a range of yummy things and everyone could just have as much as they wanted. 

Now because we didn't provide dinner we instead provided wine and dessert. This is my caramel salted brownie recipe that I made. Ok so it's not actually mine... It's from another lovely foodie blogger called Michele her blog is

You start by making a salted caramel sauce which is then spooned over the brownie mixture before baking and results in this yummy crunchy and gooey topping on your brownie. The actual brownie itself is one of my more complicated brownies to make. You have to do each step in order or things can go wrong.

Salted Caramel Brownies
Yield: 16 brownies
Prep Time: 15 minutes | Bake Time: 35 to 40 minutes
5 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped (about half your block of chocolate)
2 ounces unsweetened chocolate, chopped (About a quarter of your block, that leaves a quarter for you to eat while make them!)
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into quarters (100 gms)
3 tablespoons cocoa powder
3 eggs
1¼ cups granulated sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
Salted Caramel Sauce (recipe follows)
Fine sea salt
1. Adjust an oven rack to the lower-middle position and heat the oven to 180 degrees C. Spray a square baking pan with nonstick cooking spray or butter. Line the pan with baking paper.
2. In a medium heatproof bowl set over a pan of almost-simmering water, melt the chocolates and butter, stirring occasionally until smooth. (Or, melt in the microwave on 50% power for 30-second increments, stirring after each, until melted and smooth.) Whisk in the cocoa until smooth. Set aside to cool.
3. Whisk together the eggs, sugar, vanilla, and salt in a medium bowl until combined, about 15 seconds. Whisk the warm chocolate mixture into the egg mixture; then stir in the flour until just combined. Then add your pieces of broken up chocolate. Pour about half of the brownie mixture into the prepared pan and spread into the corners. Spoon 9 dollops of Salted Caramel Sauce on top of the brownie batter. Top with the remaining brownie mixture, spread into the corners and level the surface with a spatula. Again, spoon 9 dollops of the Salted Caramel Sauce on top of the brownie batter. With a dull butter knife, gently run it through the batter to swirl the batter just a bit (don’t do it too much or it will all mix together). Sprinkle a bit of sea salt on top.
4. Bake until slightly puffed and a toothpick inserted in the center comes out with a small amount of sticky crumbs, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool on a wire rack to room temperature, about 2 hours. Remove the brownies from the pan using the foil handles and transfer to a cutting board. Cut into squares. Brownies can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature.
(Brownie recipe adapted from Baking Illustrated)
Salted Caramel Sauce
Prep/Cook Time: 10 minutes
1 cup granulated sugar
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
2/3 cup heavy cream, at room temperature
In a 3-quart (heavy bottom pot) saucepan, heat the sugar over medium-high heat, whisking as the sugar begins to melt. Some of the sugar will harden into clumps, but that’s okay – it will melt eventually – just keep whisking. Continue to cook the sugar until it reaches a dark amber color. At that point, whisk in the salt, and then add the butter all at once and whisk until it is completely incorporated into the sugar. Remove the pan from the heat and pour in the heavy cream (it will foam up when first added). Continue to whisk until it forms a smooth sauce.
Allow to cool for 10-15 minutes before using in the brownies. The leftover sauce can be stored, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. (You’ll probably need to warm it up a bit straight from the refrigerator.)
It got me thinking about how much I love caramel, I think I love it even more than chocolate ( I know crazy!). Here are a few of my favourite caramel pictures (from Pinterest)

Caramel Mocha from Starbucks