Apparently I have the luck of the Irish, at least when it comes to Kerrygold butter. As part of their Blogger Network, I won a drawing a few months ago for some butter and was delighted when it appeared on my doorstep. 10 bricks of pure Irish gold, churned by little leprechauns in the green fields of County Kerry. Okay I am making that part up, I don’t even know if their creamery is based in County Kerry. The butter IS churned by leprechauns, though. I know that for a fact.
And then I won a drawing for a Kerrygold Party in a Box, a box filled with green napkins, balloons, shiny shamrock-shaped confetti, buttons, tattoos and toothpicks. Oh and a cookbook by Clodagh McKenna, a truly Irish name if I’ve ever heard one. Everything you could possibly need to party like an Irishman or Irishwoman on St. Paddy’s Day. I had a heck of a time keeping my kids from ripping into everything right there and then, and had to stave them off with promises of a true St. Paddy’s celebration. We will be corning our own beef again this year, which I highly recommend for flavour and for the lack of unpronounceable preservatives. And I am thinking of whipping up some homemade shamrock shakes, again for flavour and for the lack of unpronounceable preservatives!
But I thought I’d get a bit of a jump on things and create a delicious Irish-themed dessert, one I’ve had in mind for a while now. I love Guinness, although I don’t really drink it much anymore. I find it too filling, it’s like a thick chocolate shake. But I love cooking with it, it makes for a seriously delicious meat stew, and I’ve used it to make a Chocolate Stout Sorbet that totally rocked my world. My original idea was to bake it into a chocolate cake, but I changed my mind at the last minute. I’ve become obsessed with trying to make a low carb caramel sauce that will stay smooth and creamy after cooling and I’d seen regular caramel sauce made with stout, so I thought I’d give it another go and drizzle that over a chocolate bundt cake.
First let me say that caramel sauce made with stout beer is pretty awesome and doesn’t really taste like stout beer, but has a rich brown colour and a delicious tang to it. I didn’t quite achieve the perfect Low Carb Stout Caramel Sauce, because although it stays smooth for quite a while, it does begin to re-crystallize the longer it sits out. If you drizzle it over the cake, it will start to harden up after a day and become like a caramel icing or glaze, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But if you want the sauce to be creamy and gooey when it’s time to eat, my suggestion is to keep in an airtight container (a jam jar works perfectly) and then give it a quick zap in the microwave just before serving. Then pour it over the cake and serve. It will knock your socks off!
*Please note that because Guinness is made with barley, this recipe is not gluten-free.