Guilt-less Desserts & Treats for your Family
There are some choices that tell people a lot about you, even before they’ve met you.
For example, in Australia the football team you follow (and even the type of football) can let someone know how many teeth you will have. As will your choice of Holden or Ford.
Your favourite Spice Girl will immediately let people know your age (everyone under the age of 25 is asking “who?”) and what sort of princess you are. Then there’s the choice of pet; cat vs dog. An age old debate of which is better, more dependable and more worthy to be mans best friend.
But perhaps one of the most defining choices is what flavour topping you have on your Sundae.
Are you a Chocolate person; a more popular choice, safe and quite predictable?
Do you prefer Strawberry; often overly sweet (as there are no real strawberries – fake!), pretty and visually appealing but without any substance?
Or the elusive Caramel; almost exotic in nature, delicate and mysterious with a classy taste?
I am personally a Collingwood supporter (with all my own teeth), I dressed up as Ginger Spice for my 21st birthday, own 2 dogs and I would always pick Chocolate… until I met this Caramel sauce.
THE GREAT CARAMEL SAUCE OFF
The classic Caramel sauce is caramelised sugar and milk or cream. It is subtly sweet and golden brown in coloring. I found 4 different caramels; 2 were made from dates, 3 contained sweetener (maple syrup/honey), 3 had coconut cream and they all varied in coloring.
The date based caramels tasted of caramel but were not caramel in themselves. They were quite tasty as a sweet dip or spread. One of the sweetener caramels set almost immediately like toffee (it also caused my first blog based injury… a caramel burn on my chin), whilst the other thickened like a sauce.
The favourite caramel by a country mile by all testers was the one adapted from Urban Poser. I made this caramel twice as the first time was a disaster and I am very glad I persevered! It tastes creamy and like traditional caramel; it is not overly sweet or sticky so can be used in tarts, puddings or as a warmed pourable sauce. Versatile and delicious.
I altered the original recipe after a few trials. I tried adding coconut oil to thicken the caramel however it seperated and did not blend. The caramel does go quite thick once cold. It can also be made using Light Coconut Cream….cause then you feel a bit less bad about eating the whole lot in 1 sitting!
It can be lightly reheated to become pourable to be used in Maple Syrup Steamed Puddings, over ice cream or on a spoon straight into your mouth!
- 1 can Coconut Cream (organic or low/free preservatives), opened and in fridge overnight . This should measure 1 1/2 cups.
- 1/2 Cup Maple Syrup
- dash of Salt
- 2 teaspoons Vanilla Extract
- Place the coconut cream, maple syrup and salt in a saucepan over medium/high heat.
- Bring the mixture to boil, then reduce to a medium heat.
- Allow the mixture to simmer until quite thick and dark golden in colour. Stir regularly to prevent burning.
- This will take 15-20 minutes, depending on the quality of your coconut cream.
- Add vanilla and continue to cook on medium heat for another 5 minutes.
- The caramel will be dark golden in colour and delicious.
- When cooler, place into container and keep in fridge. The caramel will thicken as it refridgerates.
Other Caramels tested: