Gordon Ramsay Gives Toffee Sauce A Boozy Kick With Bourbon

The sticky-sweet goodness of old-fashioned toffee can't be beat. This buttery, caramel-toned brittle candy is similar to both caramel and butterscotch, though there are key distinctions that make this treat feel decidedly more grown-up. It's toffee's depth of flavor from brown sugar and longer cooking times that aids in its more sophisticated reputation. But toffee isn't relegated to those crunchy bits that taste so scrumptious when married with dark chocolate; it's also a classic dessert sauce spooned on cake, brownies, tarts, and more. Not only that, but like caramel, it makes a decadent dipper for fresh fruit such as apple or pear wedges or even strawberries.

As good as it is on its own, celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay brings this treacly sugar bomb up to a whole new level, adding bourbon to give it a boozy kick. In a recipe featured on his website, Ramsay pours this rich sauce over individual, cupcake-sized sticky toffee puddings. The "Kitchen Nightmares" chef calls for unsalted butter, brown sugar, corn syrup, milk, salt, and heavy cream in his recipe (along with bourbon). To class up your own toffee sauce, start with any basic recipe — many versions require only butter, sugar, and salt. After that, it's just a matter of adding the bourbon.

How to add bourbon to toffee sauce

Adding bourbon to toffee sauce is super easy. Just make the sauce according to your favorite recipe, cooking all the non-alcoholic ingredients in a saucepan on the stove on medium heat until the sugar has dissolved and begins to boil, and stirring until you've reached the desired consistency. While your toffee sauce should only take about 5 to 10 minutes to make, it's important to watch your mixture carefully to avoid burning. Next, as Ramsay instructs, remove it from the heat and add your bourbon. (He uses 2 tablespoons, but you can adjust this according to your taste.) Then, leave the mixture to cool and thicken for about five minutes before serving over your dessert of choice.

If you like it, you can also try exploring by adding bourbon (or any other whiskey variety) to caramel or butterscotch sauces, or substitute bourbon for other complementary liquors, such as spiced or coconut rums or Irish cream liqueur, spiking your favorite sauces to build a variety of mature dessert options to satisfy any discerning palate. As long as you're of age, don't be afraid to experiment — adulting never tasted so good.