This recipe is sponsored by Werther's® Original®. A crepe cake, while often considered a showstopper, can also be a great family project. A light and fluffy filling gets spread between crepe layers — a perfect job for kids — before being chilled overnight. Topped with whipped cream, chewy strands of caramel and crunchy caramelized sugar, this is a special dessert that will appeal to everyone.
For the caramels: Preheat the oven to 350° F. Line a baking sheet with a silicone mat.
Reserve 1/2 cup caramels for serving. Put 6 of the remaining caramels on the prepared baking sheet and bake until bubbly and slightly dark around the edges, about 5 minutes. Let cool completely on the baking sheet, then crush into a fine powder in a food processor; set aside.
For the filling: Combine the remaining caramels with the milk, salt and 1/4 cup of the granulated sugar in a medium saucepan. Bring to just below a simmer over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until melted and smooth, 3 to 4 minutes.
Meanwhile, whisk the cornstarch, egg yolks and remaining 1/4 cup granulated sugar in a large bowl until smooth. While continually whisking, slowly pour in about half of the milk mixture until combined. Transfer the mixture to the saucepan and cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until thickened like pudding, 2 to 4 minutes.
Strain the mixture through a fine-mesh sieve into a medium bowl. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing it directly on the surface, and refrigerate until chilled, 2 hours to overnight.
For the crepes: Puree the milk, flour, granulated sugar, butter, vanilla, salt, cinnamon and eggs in a blender on high speed until well mixed. Let the batter rest in the blender for 1 hour at room temperature or refrigerate up to 24 hours.
Before cooking, re-blend the batter on high speed for 30 seconds. Wipe 1/2 teaspoon butter on a medium crepe pan or 8-inch nonstick skillet in a very thin layer with a paper towel. Heat the pan over medium until hot.
Ladle 3 tablespoons batter into the pan. Working quickly off the heat, swirl and shake the pan to evenly coat the bottom. Return to the heat and cook the crepe, reducing the heat if it's browning too quickly, until the edges are light golden, about 2 minutes. Carefully loosen the crepe from the pan and flip it with a spatula. Cook until a few brown spots appear, 15 to 30 seconds. Transfer to a plate. Repeat with the remaining batter, wiping the pan with butter each time. Stack the crepes on the plate as you go (you should have about 20). Let them cool for 10 minutes before filling.
Finish the filling: Beat the heavy cream and confectioners' sugar in a large bowl with a mixer on medium-high speed until stiff peaks form, about 2 minutes. Stir one-quarter of the cream mixture into the caramel filling, then gently fold in the rest.
Put 1 crepe on a platter and top with a 1/4 cup filling, spreading it to the edge. Repeat, stacking the remaining crepes and filling, and ending with a crepe. Refrigerate overnight.
Microwave the reserved 1/2 cup caramels, stirring every 30 seconds, until melted, about 1 minute. Top the cake with whipped cream, drizzle with the melted caramel and sprinkle with the caramel powder.