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May 9, 2011 10:36 AM

Salted Caramel Frosting ...AKA --- MY NEMESIS! (PLEASE HELP!!!)

Okay.... I'm a pretty seasoned cook... love to bake... can follow a recipe ... change it around, substitute ingredients without much problem... i love to be in the kitchen. I do a lot of cooking and baking. Cookies etc.....

BUT.... this recipe is *killing* me! I have tried it numerous times and NOT ONE TIME have I been able to get it right the first time! It generally takes me THREE TIMES before I get a good batch! I CANNOT FIGURE OUT WHAT I'M DOING WRONG!!!!!

It's a recipe for Salted Caramel Frosting..... the first step is to BROWN THE BUTTER.... that part is a challenge in itself so if anyone does this on a regular basis and can tell me about how long it takes that'd be great.... I kinda wait for the color to change and just before it starts to look grainy is where i take it to....

The next step (assuming i didn't BURN the butter) is adding a tsp of lemon juice and the brown sugar - and here is where it begins to break down because I'm supposed to get the sugar to boil.... and it never does! I don't get it! It doesn't boil - it gets grainy and if i'm not careful the butter starts to separate! The following step is to add the cream and when I add the cream it makes little CHUNKS! Extremely unappealing....

This last time I actually heated the cream because I didn't want to pour it into the sugar mixture cold and have it seize even more.......

I was able to get some of it to an okay consistency, but i had to STRAIN OUT the hard pieces before i could mix it with the powdered sugar...

If someone can give me some pointers on this it'd be so helpful! I've made it 3 times and each time it has taken me THREE TIMES before it has worked and there doesn't seem to be any rhyme or reason to it.

It is *AWESOME* when it works but I need some serious help getting it there!

Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?

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  1. Maybe you need a different recipe. I use this recipe for a caramel sauce. I then cool and add it to a classic swiss meringue buttercream to taste. You could add it to whatever buttercream recipe you like, keeping in mind that the base is quite sweet. The base has a strong caramel flavor and is fast to put together. You can add it to a custard base for a caramel pudding, or thin it with a bit of cream for an ice cream topping. You could also fold in whipped cream for a delicious mousse or for frosting a cake.

    1/3 heavy cream
    1/4 cup white sugar
    1/4 cup packed brown sugar
    2 tablespoons water
    1 T corn syrup

    1/2 tsp salt
    1/2 teaspoon vanilla paste or extract
    2 tablespoons salted butter

    Heat the cream to a boil. Keep warm while making the caramel.
    Heat the sugars, corn syrup and water over high heat to a boil. Brush down sides with wet pastry brush. Cook until it forms a string between your wet finger and a spatula. (this should take 5 to 10 minutes
    Pour in the cream while stirring constantly. Keep it over the heat and cook it until it thickens again. Remove from heat, pour into a metal bowl and add salt, vanilla, and butter. Place the bowl in a bowl of ice to cool. Let cool until thick. Add to buttercream to taste.

    This has a very pronounced caramel flavor and is quite sweet, so add it a bit at a time so it's not overwhelming.