I’m gonna level with you guys: as I write this it’s Sunday night, I’m super hungover and I’ve been half arseing around the house all day trying to get the housework done so that I don’t have to do it after work tomorrow. Therefore, I’m in no fit state to try and construct an actually coherent piece of writing for your Monday bake off bake along fix. I will, if you don’t mind, keep it brief, so that I can wander off to bed hours earlier than is socially acceptable.. maybe taking a few Kit Kats with me.
I’ve done the signature bake again this week. I’d have loved to try my hand at Stroopwaffles but they’re not the sort of thing you can get done on a whim. There are a couple of pieces of equipment (namely a flat waffle maker) that you need to buy before you can get started, and as invested as I might be in this blog series and keeping it varied, I’d get told off if I brought another waffle maker into our not enormous living space. So yeah, again I’m bringing you my attempt at the same challenge. Maybe just don’t expect me to veer from this path, it seems to be the one most easily traveled and I love me some easy.
So I’ve never made caramel straight up from scratch before. I’ve made it with the condensed milk method, but never straight up sugar, butter and cream. This is because it’s a truth universally acknowledged that caramel is reeeeally easy to fuck up. And if something’s easy to fuck up, you can bet yourself I’m gonna fuck it up. (I’m gonna get a stern text from my Mum for all those fucks in a row, so I hope you enjoyed them). On the show last week, there were some total disasters. Crystallisation for no apparent reason was my biggest fear going into this, and something that most of the contestants struggled with at one point or another.
I noticed that most of the people in the tent were swearing by the ‘do not touch it at all’ method. That’s why I met this recipe with some surprise and suspicion. It calls for constant stirring. I, being the reckless danger mouse baker that I am, went for it anyway. And thank god I did, cause my caramel came out perfect first time.
As you can see, everything else went pretty smoothly and I turned out some half decent millionaire shortbreads. I’m happy with the caramel to shortbread ratio and I left it long enough to set at each stage so that my layers are nice and defined. I’m not winning star baker anytime soon, but I think these would keep me in the tent.