Simple Sundays | Birthdays, Butterbeer & Homemade Butterscotch Sauce


The wizarding world of Harry Potter has been near and dear to my heart for about a decade, which, come to think of it, is as long as my own children have been present in my life. Those long, late nights of pregnancy insomnia when I was expecting my daughter were less lonely with my friends Harry, Ron and Hermione, and those subsequent hours of nursing would be spent sneaking in chapters about spells and potions. For my two little ones, they don’t even know of a life without Hogwarts.

As they have grown older, their own love for J.K. Rowling’s brilliant imagination has deepened. It started with me reading to them, and this past year, my daughter devoured the entire series, novel after hefty novel. If you were to come to my house, seeing two blurs running about in wizarding robes and wands would not be a surprise.

For my son’s 6th birthday party, he wanted to celebrate with a few close buds with a pretend sleepover in the Gryffindor Common Room. I immersed myself in last minute planning, but it was so rewarding to brainstorm with my children on how to transform our house for the evening.

The children were greeted by the Fat Lady at the front door, gaining entrance to the “Common Room” by the evening’s password: pig snout. My daughter made the perfect prefect, and escorted the boys to work on their Spell books (their book of spells had some coloring pages to keep them occupied as guests arrived). I donned my witch’s hat for a fizzy class on potions. My little wizards hunted for Hagrid’s magical creatures. And of course, there was a Feast in the Grand Hall, decorated in Gryffindor’s colors. Owls delivered notes of thanks to the guests, and our little wizards used their Galleons from Gringott’s Bank to purchase sweets from Honeydukes on their way out of our magical world.

One of the must tries for us was Butterbeer, and I was excited to find simple recipes that transform cream sodas to Hogsmead’s favorite brew. But in my search for a good quality Butterscotch Sauce or Syrup, I was frustrated to find that there aren’t many available in the stores without corn syrup. It was time to make my own.

I found Deb Perelman’s recipe on Smitten Kitchen to be a delightfully easy method, although, I wanted to see how it would turn out with evaporated milk in lieu of heavy cream. I loved the result, and found that it made for a very rich Butterbeer. There was no way my kids and I could even drink an entire bottle, let alone a small shot glass, but it was the magical transformation that made it all the more fun.

SOURCES

Butterbeer Recipe and Printable Labels can found at Serendipity Soiree.
Harry Potter Toppers and Honeydukes Printables from Serendipity Creative.
Harry Potter Cupcake Wrappers from Home Holiday Keepsakes.

Don’t Forget

There’s a fantastic $150 Giveaway to Joss & Main underway! If you haven’t already entered to win, I hope you take a moment and check it out. [/note]

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Homemade Butterscotch Sauce & Butterbeer

Yield: Makes about 3/4 cup of Butterscotch and 1 bottle of Butterbeer (which can adequately serve 2-3, it's that rich).

Ingredients:

Homemade Butterscotch Sauce

  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup packed dark or light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup evaporated milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract, plus more to taste

Butterbeer

  • 1 bottle of cream soda (I used Jone's Cream Soda)
  • 1/4 cup Homemade Butterscotch Sauce

Directions:

Butterscotch Sauce:

Melt the butter in a heavy gauge small saucepan over medium heat. Stir in the brown sugar, evaporated milk and salt, whisking well. Bring the sauce to a boil, and let it bubble for about 5 minutes whisking periodically. Remove from heat and whisk in the vanilla extract. Taking care not to burn yourself, taste and adjust seasoning with salt and vanilla to your preference. This sauce thickens as it cools and can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator. I like to reheat it in the microwave before use.

Butterbeer:
Combine cream soda to warm butterscotch sauce. Return to bottle if desired. I preferred the beverage warm, because the butter content tended to solidify when cooled. While this is already a very rich drink, you may wish to garnish with whipped cream.

Butterscotch Sauce adapted ever so slightly from Smitten Kitchen. The original recipe calls for heavy cream, and I was pleased to find that evaporated milk substitutes quite nicely.

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by Liren Baker on October 16, 2011

12 Responses to “Simple Sundays | Birthdays, Butterbeer & Homemade Butterscotch Sauce”

  1. Alan Cooke — October 16, 2011 @ 4:18 pm (#
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    Looks delicious! Never been into Harry Potter, but I’m a sucker when it comes to Butterscotch…lol Thanks for sharing :)

  2. Vicki Bensinger — October 16, 2011 @ 7:12 pm (#
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    I’ve never tried Butterbeer before. It looks very rich but good. I’ll have to give it a try.

  3. kankana — October 16, 2011 @ 8:12 pm (#
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    OMG! I am this huge fan of harry Porter and I have no clue now many times I have seen the movie :)
    Butterscoth is my husband’s fav sauce and I have always wanted to try making it at home. Thanks so much for sharing the recipe !

  4. carolineadobo — October 16, 2011 @ 11:54 pm (#
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    Belated birthday wishes to your little boy! A Harry Potter-themed party is a fun idea. My boys love Harry Potter and been wanting to try butterbeer, thanks for sharing the recipe.

  5. Belinda @zomppa — October 17, 2011 @ 1:15 am (#
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    Happy birthday! What a party – I would LOVE to have been…attending, I admit, and be greeted by the Fat Lady? Nice touch!

  6. Elyse @The Cultural Dish — October 17, 2011 @ 6:11 am (#
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    OMG! This is the best birthday! I want this for mine… lol. I am such a harry potter fan as well and still cannot believe that the books and movies are over. I literally grew up with those books! I love the butterbeer so much. I had also made a couple different butterbeer recipes to try and find the perfect one! Oh, and I need to get my hands on those cupcake wrappers! :)

  7. Jacqui — October 17, 2011 @ 8:53 am (#
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    How adorable! Love love love Harry Potter, and I’ll definitely be rereading them with my kids, when I have kids, that is. :) Happy birthday to your little wizard!

  8. Joy — October 17, 2011 @ 12:51 pm (#
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    Great sauce recipe.

  9. Sippitysup — October 17, 2011 @ 4:07 pm (#
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    Love the “beer” idea. sweet and sophisticated. GREG

  10. Julia — October 18, 2011 @ 5:11 am (#
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    I’m the only person on Earth who isn’t into Harry Potter. But anything with the words ‘beer’ and ‘butter’ in the same sentence, I’ll try :) Great sauce recipe!

  11. Norma — October 19, 2011 @ 12:04 pm (#
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    What a great idea for my granddaughter who is a HP follower and a baker. Thanks for this post.

  12. Pingback: Craving butterscotch. « cook.can.read

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