the cake trials of 2013: salted caramel buttercream

A while ago I had the most delicious salted caramel buttercream cake at The Bachelor Farmer in Minneapolis, Minnesota. I wanted to recreate it for P’s 30th and since caramel is infamously difficult to make I’ve done a couple trials, and come to a conclusion: buy your caramel from the baking aisle!
frosting ingredients:
1 1/2 sticks salted butter, softened
1 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1/4 teaspoon sea salt (i like to sprinkle this on at the end)
6-8 cups powdered sugar
1/2-3/4 cup caramel
Frosting is easiest with a KitchenAid, and mine is sitting at my parents’ house (it has America voltage) waiting for the day I move back to the US, so I must use my arm like a baker from 1880. Basically you mix and mix until all the ingredients are incorporated. First, mix the butter until it’s fluffy. Then add a cup of sugar at a time until the frosting is the right consistency. At the end, add your caramel. Tip: Since I use my arm and not a KitchenAid, I use a dash of milk or cream to get the sugar incorporation going.
I sprinkle the (himalayan pink sea) salt on at the end, after the cake has been frosted.
I use Smitten Kitchen’s Best Birthday Cake to go underneath. Serve with vanilla ice cream.

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