Brown Butter Caramel Recipe | Wine Enthusiast Magazine
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FLX Table Brown Butter Caramel

Courtesy Christopher P. Bates, MS, chef and sommelier, FLX Table, Geneva, New York

FLX Table works this brown butter caramel into seasonal desserts year-round—always serving jars at the table for guests to help themselves.


4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 cup granulated sugar
½ cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon kosher salt


Brown butter in heavy skillet (ideally with light-colored bottom) by cooking over medium heat and whisking or swirling pan until foaming has subsided and butter is golden-brown with a nutty aroma. Remove from heat and pour into a bowl, leaving as much sediment behind as possible.

Heat sugar in heavy, deep saucepan over medium heat. As sugar starts to melt, stir gently with heatproof rubber spatula. When sugar is completely melted and deep brown in color (it should register 330˚F on a candy thermometer), add cream very slowly (it will bubble up). Whisk to break any clumps and make sure cream is well-incorporated, about 1 minute. Remove from heat and whisk in 3 tablespoons of brown butter and salt. Let cool before serving. Makes about 1 cup.

Pair It

D’Oliveiras 1910 Sercial Madeira

“I would eat this with the oldest example of D’Olivieras Sercial you can track down,” says Chef and Sommelier Bates, “preferably close to 100 years old—it will be worth whatever you can afford to spend! The caramel, passion fruit and spice notes, as well as the bright fresh acid will balance and contrast the rich, buttery smokiness of the caramel.”