I made some salted caramel cupcakes, and made the caramel myself from scratch! And I'm so proud. And it's SO good. Wanna know how?
Welll... I cheated on the cupcake part, just because I didn't have time to do the cake from scratch. But, it's super easy from scratch, too. I used a boxed cake mix- Duncan Hines Milk Chocolate. I prepared the cupcakes according to the directions on the box, and then let them cool. After they cooled, I used a paring knife to cut a cone shape out of the top. Then, you make the caramel sauce. Here's how:
2.5 cups sugar
1 tbsp cornstarch
2/3 cup water
3/4 cup heavy cream
2.5 tsp sea salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
Heat sugar, water, and corn syrup. Stir it until it's pretty clear. Boil it until the temperature reaches 360 F. It will take a while, but you have to get it to that temperature, or it won't caramelize. Meanwhile, mix the cream and the vanilla. Just stir it for a few seconds, and put it in the refrigerator.
When the sugar mixture reaches 360 F, SLOWLY pour in the cream and vanilla. I say SLOWLY, because it will go BUCK WILD and pop and splatter all up in your face. And let out a bunch of steam. I poured it slowly, and it still went all crazy (but not in my face, thankfully) and steamed up like mad. Anyhow, when you get it all stirred up, it will totally look like caramel, and your face is going to be SO happy. I promise.
Let it cool a minute or so, until it starts to thicken a little, and then spoon or carefully pour the caramel into the holes you cut out. It may start to seep into the cupcake, but that's okay. It will mostly set and be a caramelly consistency.
Here they are before I frosted them. Sorry for the bad iPhone picture.
Here they are all frosted. I suppose you could do this many ways, but I just put the frosting in a plastic sandwich bag and squeezed a dollop on the top of each cupcake. I will warn you- one can of frosting only frosted 21 cupcakes, and I made 24. So, next time, I will be a little more stingy with the frosting.
YAY! I am so, so happy. I will take them to work tomorrow where they will be devoured by 20 people and I will be the popularest girl on our team.