Homemade caramel sauce is amazing, but add amber ale and flaky salt, and it becomes an ultra-luxe topping for ice cream, brownies, pancakes and more.
Five ingredients and a short time commitment to stovetop stirring is all you need to bring this ale-infused caramel sauce to life. It’s a sticky, smooth, salty-sweet treat that makes desserts (and pancakes!) even more special. Flaky sea salt adds extra flair, but you can substitute sea or kosher salt for a similarly delicious sauce (see tip).
In a medium heavy-bottomed pot, bring sugar and amber ale to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring just until sugar is dissolved. Swirling pot occasionally and without stirring, let sugar mixture boil until it’s a rich amber colour, about 5 minutes. (You don’t want to stir at all during this time, because the sugar can recrystalize and give the sauce a gritty texture.)
Remove pot from heat and immediately whisk in butter until melted and fully blended. Add cream in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly, until smooth. Whisk in salt.
Return sauce to a boil over medium-high heat, whisking occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, whisking occasionally, until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool completely (sauce will thicken as it cools).
Transfer to a jar and seal with lid. Refrigerate for up to 1 month. Re-liquefy sauce in a saucepan over low heat (or in a bowl in the microwave) before serving.
If you can’t get Maldon salt, feel free to substitute regular sea salt or kosher salt. These salts have smaller crystals, so start with slightly less than the recipe calls for and taste the sauce. Add more, if desired, to reach the right salty-sweet balance.