Since getting a crock pot for Christmas I have been on a mission to find new recipes and techniques I can enjoy. Mainly I've been making soups. Soups are awesome. I saw a number of links of Pinterest (including this one) about making caramel (or dulce de leche) in your crock pot. What?! You know I had to try that.The basic idea is you take a can of sweetened condensed milk, remove the label, submerge it in water in your crock pot (set on low) for eight hours. Sounds easy enough. I read a few sources that mentioned this method could result in a rust ring forming in the bottom of your crock pot. I don't know if that's true or not but I didn't want to take the risk (not my new and still sort of shiny crock pot!). Instead I tried a slightly modified method with a few added ingredients. Here's what I did:In a mason jar pour in the contents from one can of sweetened condensed milk. Add any extra ingredients you like. I made two jars, and in one I added 1/2 teaspoon coarse grain sea salt (salted caramel anyone?). To the other I added 1 tablespoon bourbon. I love bourbon. :) Place the lid on the jar and seal. Shake the jar to mix up the ingredients. Place in your crock pot and fill with water so that the water covers the jar just past the milk. Cover your crock pot. I found my lid no longer fit over the mason jars, so instead I covered my crock pot with aluminum foil to keep the water from evaporating. Set on low and let that cook for 8 hours (go to bed, wake up to caramel!).
This was a fun experiment! The results: thick, richly colored caramel. The caramel is not perfectly smooth in texture, it was somewhat grainy. I loved both flavors (salted and bourbon infused). This would be delicious as a dip for apples, smeared on toast with peanut butter, piped into a cupcake or a small spoonful stirred into coffee. I gotz ideas for my caramel, as you can see.
What about you? Have you ever tried making crockpot caramel? xo. Emma