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Friday, December 6, 2013

Buttery Caramel Recipe & Tutorial


 
I love making homemade candy every Christmas.  I also enjoy giving candy away to friends and neighbors as little gifts.

The first couple of years that I made caramel from scratch, it was not a positive experience.  I followed other suggestions I'd found to a "T" for the preparation, but it just didn't work for me.  For example, many recipes suggest using foil to line the caramel pan.  This was a disaster.  The foil, even though it was buttered, stuck to the caramel and it was quite a chore having to pick off the little pieces from the candy.  Ugh.  Then - trying to cut the caramel with a sharp knife was difficult and my hand was really sore by the time I finished.  Through trial and error, I found that when making this type of candy, it is best to ALWAYS use parchment paper to line the pan.  It never sticks to the candy and it can be easily removed in one sheet.  Second, I use a dough scraper (like this one) to cut the caramel into pieces.  It is MUCH easier to cut the caramel, and the little handle on the scraper is easy to grip onto.  Now, caramel making is a more pleasant experience - that's for sure!

Anyway, this is the recipe I use for my caramel.  It is buttery and yummy, and people love it.  Enjoy!

Homemade Buttery Caramel Recipe:

Ingredients:

1 pound of butter (4 sticks)
2 pounds of brown sugar (1 bag)
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups light corn syrup
2 cans sweetened condensed milk
1 Tablespoon vanilla
Optional: Chopped walnuts (1-2 cups, as desired)

Directions:

1) Melt butter in a heavy deep pan.


2) Add sugar and salt; stir thoroughly.


3) Stir in corn syrup and mix well.


4) Gradually add milk, stirring constantly.


5) Cook and stir over medium heat to firm ball stage (245-250 degrees). This will take approximately 12-15 minutes. I strongly recommend using a candy thermometer to measure the temperature.  The candy stages are usually clearly marked on the thermometer, making the candy "goof-proof" to make.


6) Keep on stirring.  The mixture will be quite bubbly.  When the firm ball temperature is reached, remove pan from heat and stir in vanilla.


7) If desired, nuts may be stirred into candy at this point.  Otherwise, skip this step and go onto step number 8.

8) Pour caramel into a large parchment paper lined pan. (The pan I used was 18" by 13").  Let cool.



9)  Lift the cooled caramel out of pan, picking it up by the parchment paper.  Use the dough cutter to score the candy and cut into squares.  I make all of the cuts in one direction first, then turn the pan 1/4 of a turn and cut the other direction.





10) Separate the caramels and wrap them with cellophane candy wrappers.  I use a 4 1/4" by 4 1/4" size, which seems to be a perfect fit.  I purchased my wrappers from here.




Yield:  Makes 5 pounds of candy, or approximately 135 1-1/2" pieces.

Happy candy making!

P.S.  If you haven't already done so, please don't forget to enter our blog giveaway for a $25.00 gift certificate to our Etsy shop (Two Crafty Mules).  All you have to do is leave a comment on our blog here and/or on our Facebook page.  (You may also enter on each site to have two chances of winning.) One lucky winner will be selected on Monday, 12/16/13.  Good luck!



1 comment:

Мария Должикова said...

Such tasty!
I invite you to my Blog
http://marydreamart.blogspot.ru/
May be it will be interestihg for you
I also have blog with cookies,but I have not updated it for a long time
http://cooknotes-md.blogspot.ru/