I used to be so good with caramel. For years, I made caramel with no problems, and then when I made this hazelnut cake, everything changed. I can’t remember how many batches of caramel I made for that cake, each one forming crystals instead of turning amber; I do remember that even the final batch crystallized, but I had given up. Since then, it’s been hit or miss – probably half of my caramel attempts crystallize. I’ve lost my caramel mojo.
I know a lot of my problem is that I’m working with smaller batches than the recipe recommends. Working with caramel is notoriously difficult in small batches, but my freezer is already stocked with vanilla cake, three types of cookies, and cheesecake. A half batch of burnt sugar ice cream would be plenty for us.
Fortunately, there’s an ace in the hole when it comes to caramel – corn syrup. A seemingly insignificant squirt of the sticky stuff can make all the difference in whether you get to move on to the next step in the recipe or you dump out yet another batch of sugar and start over.
So with that taken care of, I was finally able to make some ice cream. And lo! it was good. Smooth and chunk-free, which is my preference, plus that deep caramelly hint of bitterness makes for a really fun ice cream flavor.
Becky chose this for Tuesdays with Dorie, and she has the recipe posted. For the first time in weeks, I didn’t add any salt to Dorie’s recipe! But I did add a squeeze of corn syrup to the sugar/water mixture.