In a medium sauce pan, add sugar and water (and optional corn syrup). Stir and cook on medium-high heat until the sugar syrup starts to change colors around the outer edge to an amber-brownish color, or if using a candy thermometer – 350 degrees. Remove from heat immediately and using a wooden spoon or whisk, quickly stir everything to keep the sugar water from burning. Your simple syrup should be a golden ale brown. As you continue to stir, pour in 1/2 cup of warm heavy cream and pats of butter. When the cream makes contact with the sugar water it will start bubbling violently. Continue to stir until the sugar crystallization dissolves. Finally, add 1/4 cup of additional warm heavy cream (and rum) until caramel sauce is nice and smooth. Transfer to a heat proof jar and allow the sauce to cool on the counter slightly covered with plastic wrap for an hour. Use immediately or seal the jar and store in the refrigerator. Enjoy!
Note: *As caramel sauce cools, it will thicken. Before serving, re-heat in the microwave for 30 seconds for 1 cup.
Chocolate Ganache Recipe:
8 ounces of chocolate, chopped into small pieces
1 cup heavy cream
*optional 3 tbl. of flavored liquor
Place chocolate pieces in a large bowl. Heat heavy cream on medium high until it comes to a boil. Remove from heat and immediately pour cream over chocolate and stir until completely mixed and glossy. Allow ganache to cool before pouring over cakes as a glaze. The longer you allow the ganache to cool, the thicker it will set. Typically I stick mine in the refrigerator so it is slightly cold before whipping. For piping or frosting, allow the ganache to completely cool and set up.
Read more: Copycat Starbucks Signature Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate