Making cakes is back-breaking work and I’ve learned to appreciate the time and effort involved with all things frosted, regardless of how uninspired, bizarre, or wrong it is. I hadn’t noticed an hour has passed and I still couldn’t get the icing applied evenly. I guess that explains the heavy dusting of almond meal.
Recipe adapted from Shuna Fish Lydon
Caramel Cake with Caramelized Butter Frosting
makes one 9-inch cake
For the Caramel Syrup:
2 cups granulated sugar
1/2 cup water
1 cup water (for stopping)
Caramel Syrup Instructions:
- In a small stainless steel saucepan, mix the water and sugar until sandy. Boil the mixture over high heat until dark amber and slightly smoking. If using a thermometer, heat until the syrup reaches 380ºF / 195ºC.
- Wear heatproof gloves for protection in the following step. Slowly pour 1 cup of water into the saucepan and immediately lower the heat to medium. Watch out for sputtering hot syrup and steam.
- Whisk the syrup until reduced and thickened.
- Let the caramel syrup cool completely before continuing.
For the Caramelized Butter Frosting:
Ingredients Volume Ounces Grams unsalted butter 12 tbsp 6 170 confectioner’s sugar, sifted 4 1/2 cups 16 454 heavy cream 6 tbsp caramel syrup (recipe above) 4 tbsp vanilla extract 2 tsp kosher salt pinch
Caramelized Butter Frosting Instructions:
- In a small saucepan, cook the butter over medium heat until brown.
- Once the butter is browned, use a fine mesh metal sieve to strain into a heatproof bowl. Let the strained brown butter cool completely before continuing.
- Pour the strained brown butter into a mixing bowl. Mix in the confectioner’s sugar slowly just until dry and sandy. Add about 2 tablespoons of the heavy cream or caramel syrup to thin the butter frosting.
- Alternate between the confectioner’s sugar and heavy cream / caramel syrup until all of the sugar is incorporated.
- Add the vanilla extract and salt and mix until the frosting is smooth.
Caramelized Butter Frosting Storage:
The caramelized butter frosting will keep in the refrigerator for up to a month.
For the Caramel Cake:
Ingredients Volume Ounces Grams all purpose flour 2 cups 9 255 baking powder 1/2 tsp unsalted butter 10 tbsp 5 142 granulated sugar 1 1/4 cups 8.8 250 kosher salt 1/2 tsp caramel syrup (recipe above) 1/3 cup large eggs 2 vanilla extract splash whole milk 1 cup 8.6 244
- Have all the caramel cake ingredients at room temperature before continuing.
Caramel Cake Instructions:
Preheat Oven 350ºF / 177ºC Butter a 9-inch cake pan (2 - 2.5 inches deep) Sift Sift together the all-purpose flour and baking powder. Mix (Creaming Method) In a separate container, beat the butter until smooth. Add the sugar and salt. Cream until light and fluffy. Pour in the caramel syrup and mix to incorporation. Add the eggs one at a time and mix to incorporation. Finally, add the vanilla extract and mix until light and smooth. Alternate between a third of the sifted flour and a half cup of the milk and mixing to incorporation after each addition. Begin and end with the sifted flour. Pan Pour the batter into the buttered cake pan. Place the cake pan on a cookie sheet or sheet pan. Bake 350ºF / 177ºC for 30 minutes. Rotate the pan and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes, until the sides pull away from the pan and a wooden skewer inserted in the middle of the cake comes out clean. Cool Let the cake cool completely at room temperature.
Good thing there’s frosting involved.
Caramel Cake with Caramelized Butter Frosting Assembly:
Leveled caramel cake with caramelized butter frosting for masking.
Masking Apply a thin coat of frosting. This will keep crumbs from the final layer of frosting.
Masked caramel cake.
Refrigerate Refrigerate for at least 15 minutes to set the first layer of icing. Icing
My back hurts.
Dusted with almond flour. Lame attempt at adding some semblance of nutritional value. Good attempt at hiding mediocre icing skills.