Treat me: Caramel sauce

Salted caramel has been so hot right now for so long it’s a wonder we’re not all suffering third-degree burns. In fact, when I saw this pic of Nigella on the cover of Stylist several months ago, burns were all I could think about. That and how they managed to capture the caramel dripping off her eyelashes.

Image from

But while salted caramel is all well and good, that doesn’t mean we should forget the original. Nor does it mean you can’t add other new and exciting flavours.

Simple Caramel Sauce
This is very easy and very forgiving. If cook it too long it can be rescued with a splash of milk and more stirring. It’s very good over vanilla ice cream or even plain Greek yoghurt. For a proper retro pudding, layer it in little glasses with crumbled gingernut biscuits and Greek yoghurt or whipped cream for a sort of instant trifle. I’m having camera issues today, but I assure you my sauce looks just like the one in the picture above. I can’t say the same for the cook.

For the basic sauce:
225g 1 1/2 lightly packed cups soft brown sugar
4 Tbsp butter
3 Tbsp milk

Put everything in a small saucepan over gentle heat. Stir until it starts to boil, then let bubble away gently for five minutes. Remove from the heat and beat enthusiastically until smooth. You can use it straight away as is, or you can add either:
– two good pinches of flaky sea salt, from Maldon or Marlborough or Maine or Mooloolaba, or wherever the flaky sea salt is from in your neck of the woods
– OR: two generous teaspoons of ground ginger
– OR: one teaspoon of ground cardamom

Or you could go completely crazy and add the lot. Stir well, add a splash of milk if it seems very thick, and use as you see fit. Any leftover sauce can be stored, covered, in the fridge.

Oh, and before I forget, the lucky winners of The Kitchenmaid’s second birthday giveaway are…
Lynne, who wins the Equagold goodies
Louise, who wins the stunning whitebait teatowel
Melissa, who wins the Pratty’s Tea
– and Bella, who trotted off to the New Zealand Chocolate Festival last Friday.

Have a great weekend, everyone. I’m going to hang out with Ruth Pretty and Dean Brettschneider on Sunday to learn some new tricks. Lucky me! x



  1. August 31, 2012 / 9:31 am

    oh I bet that's a pain to get out of your hair! What a sport. But it sounds amazing. I love how a little salt can give a kick to the most unexpected things. I still have to try sea salt chocolate. Something good to look forward to.

  2. September 1, 2012 / 3:09 am

    Love caramel sauce…can eat it all on it's own…spoonful after spoonful….never thought of adding cardamom but may well have to with the next batch.

  3. September 2, 2012 / 7:08 am

    I made a salted caramel sauce the other week, it was great on the day it was made but after that just went into a grainy sugary mass. Will be trying this one as it seems to be a far better recipe … or maybe it was just made by a far better cook lol.

  4. September 4, 2012 / 3:49 am

    mm, caramel sauce. i do love it (maybe a little too much- it's probably responsible for substantial weight gain while i was at uni).

    thank you for tea prize- how exciting to win something!

  5. September 14, 2012 / 12:54 pm

    Oh my gosh, I am drooling on my computer. This sounds so amazing! I make caramel sauce often-ish, as a sauce to go over ginger cake or sticky toffee pudding (stuff the dates!) but I add cream to it, I need to try your recipe. I need to try it now. Yum.

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