This weekend I attempted a homemade caramel, which I wanted to be slightly flavored with vanilla.
Not too difficult... I thought, but instead of a caramel I ended up with a candylike substance which is white, crystaline, flavored, but without the wonderful flavors of caramel.
I thought it was a simple enough process, I used 1/2 cup of sugar and 1/4 cup of water and heated over low heat, stiring occasionally, and to this I added a small amount of vanilla powder.
Any idea whay may have gone wrong? Is it too much water? (and would just a small amount too much make a fundemental difference in whether a caramel sauce was made? The mix never browned, it was clear up until the moment it became hardened.