Balsamic Butterscotch Sauce

April 23, 2013
Photo by Julia Gartland
Author Notes

It's good! Pour it on bananas, apple cake, vanilla ice cream, strawberries, bread pudding, ricotta, yogurt, gingerbread, a get the picture. This recipe came about by experimenting with some cream, sugar and vinegar last week. I stirred it up, tasted it, liked it, drank the whole thing, then went forth and researched how I could apply it to a dessert.

I know I will offend someone here, but if it doesn't break your heart to use Balsamico Tradizionale in a caramel sauce, then add a spoonful or two. It's pretty darn good.

Slightly adapted from Regan Daley's recipe for Brown Sugar-Brandy Sauce in her cookbook In the Sweet Kitchen, one of my favorite, most inspiring cookbooks.

Test Kitchen Notes

WHO: We call faithful Food52er mrslarkin the Scone Lady, and you should too.
WHAT: Your desserts' new best friend.
HOW: Make a standard-issue caramel sauce, and whisk in a secret ingredient. Then drizzle on everything.
WHY WE LOVE IT: Don't let the addition of an untraditional ingredient stop you from making this. The vinegar creates a bright note among the otherwise sweet, rich sauce -- which makes it okay to eat spoonful after spoonful. Good thing, because we couldn't stop at just one. —The Editors

  • Cook time 10 minutes
  • Makes about 2 cups
  • 1/3 cup salted butter
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2/3 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar, plus a little of the really good balsamic vinegar, if you're feeling generous
  • 1 pinch flaky sea salt, for topping
In This Recipe
  1. Place butter, sugars, and cream in a small saucepan, and stir over low heat until the sugar dissolves. Turn up the heat to medium, bring the sauce to a boil, and whisk continuously for 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
  2. Stir in the vinegar, to taste. The sauce will thicken as it cools.
  3. Pour onto whatever you want (see headnote) and top with some flaky sea salt.

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