Someone might be trying to tell me something. As I write this I have a pile of pots and pans stacked up in my kitchen that are in various stages of revolt against me. My ceramic coated non-stick pan has a bent handle (yes, in my off hours I moonlight as the Hulk) – piece of crap pan, the weld broke on one of the handles of my stockpot, some demonic spirit has possessed the innards of my favorite saucepan with hot spots causing all kinds of things to scorch on the bottom of the pan (and I just don’t feel like breaking out the hammer and chisel to clean it off) and my favorite ceramic pie pan inexplicably flew out of my cupboard and broke in half when it hit the floor (okay, maybe my cupboard is a little too full). And before you all start telling me to quit buying cheap pans…the only cheap pan I own(ed) is/was that ceramic non-stick one.
I think what’s going on is a conspiracy of my cooking vessels trying to tell me that they’ve had enough and they just can’t take it anymore. Thanksgiving dinner just isn’t going to happen at the Belly house this year. With the great cooking gear mutiny, I’m fairly certain the oven might be next. Although, I do have some experience in that department. My first year of making the turkey, my oven died 30 minutes into the cooking of the bird. It’s not easy to drive your raw bird across town to use your friend’s oven, but it can be done. I’m just not taking the chance of it happening this year.
Thankfully, my new (and most favorite) copper pot has not failed me. This isn’t just any ol’ regular copper pot that you can cook anything and everything in, this is a copper pot specifically for sugar, or candy making. It makes your life so much easier when melting sugar (for things like making caramels) for this easy caramel sauce. Copper is an excellent heat conductor, the pot is really heavy and the copper color allows you to see the color of the melting sugar much better than say a dark anodized pot.
That’s enough of the boring stuff. On to this delicious Mexican chocolate recipe.
Last year I made this ginger spiced caramel sauce and really liked it (as did the recipients), but it was a little too thick. When it was refrigerated it became too chilled to be pourable and needed to be warmed first. Since then, I’ve been tinkering with different caramel sauces when I decided that a chocolate caramel sauce would be a perfect gift this year.
With only 6 ingredients, this easy caramel sauce is sure to be a winner at your house.
One of my recent discoveries has been Mexican chocolate. While I have been aware of it for some time, and have used chocolate that I have spiced similarly to Mexican chocolate I have never used actual Mexican chocolate before. If you go searching for Mexican chocolate recipes, most of the results you’ll find are for hot chocolate. Since the history of chocolate dates back to the Aztecs and Mayans (in Mexico) and their use of cocao in drink form, this makes sense. However, there are lots of uses for this mildly spiced chocolate.
This Mexican chocolate caramel sauce isn’t overly sweet due to the use of Turbinado (raw) sugar and the Mexican chocolate which tends not to be a sweet chocolate. But it’s got a nice rich flavor, almost a slightly burnt flavor mixed with chocolate and a touch of cinnamon.
This sauce is perfect for drizzling over fruit, pouring over ice cream or even sprucing up that traditional pumpkin pie with a nice splash of Mexican Chocolate on top.
The in-laws may have already crept into your life this week so I’ll keep this quick and to the point. It may take you an entire case of wine (or insert your spirit of choice here) or more to get through the next month or so with your in-laws. I get it. You can’t do anything right, you don’t make the mashed potatoes like Great Great Grandma did, your traditions are weird, your kids should be better behaved, the list goes on and on. But if their son does any (or all) of these things he’s a keeper and maybe they’re not such bad people after all.
- Holds your hair back when you’re sick.
- Buys you tampons without making a big deal about it.
- Pours you your favorite drink when he sees that you’ve had the day from hell.
- Takes the garbage out at least once during the month without being asked. (An entire month only happens on TV, not in real life)
- Spontaneously cleans at least one room in the house for no particular reason.
- Doesn’t browbeat you or laugh at you when you have a righteous hangover (he at least waits until the next day).
Recipe: Mexican Chocolate Caramel Sauce
Summary: Makes Approximately 1 1/2 Cups
- 6 Tablespoons Salted Butter
- 3/4 Cup Turbinado (Raw) Sugar
- 1 Cup Heavy Cream
- 1 (3 ounce) Disk Mexican Chocolate Finely Grated (I used Abuelita)
- 1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- Pinch of Sea Salt
- Melt the butter in a heavy medium size (preferably deep) saucepan over medium heat.
- Add sugar, stirring frequently (with a whisk), until the sugar is melted and is a deep golden brown color (you may start to smell a slightly burning aroma or notice that the edges begin to look like they’re burning).
- Remove from heat and immediately whisk in half of the cream (mixture will bubble pretty violently, so you may want to be wearing long sleeves when you make this). Stir in the remainder of cream until thoroughly combined.
- Whisk in the grated chocolate, vanilla and salt.
- If any lumps form, return the pan to low heat and whisk until the lumps are dissolved.
- Pour the caramel into a heatproof container and allow caramel to come to room temperature.
- Cover and chill in refrigerator until completely cool.
If you use a dark colored saucepan to make the caramel sauce, you may have a hard time seeing the color change, look at your whisk and watch the edges of your saucepan.
I used Turbinado/Raw Sugar in this recipe to get a richer flavor in the caramel sauce, but you could use regular granulated sugar. The flavor will be a bit lighter, but still delicious.
Preparation time: 10 minute(s)
Cooking time: 15 minute(s)
Number of servings (yield): 1
Culinary tradition: USA (General)
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