Recently I have seen a lot of recipes & goodies combining the saltiness of, well, salt with the rich, gooey, sweetness of caramel. So when my sister came back from Nana Banana's raving about these chocolate salted caramels Nana served, I knew it was time to check it out for myself.
While home for Christmas, we went on our own pursuit of hand crafted chocolate covered salted caramels. Clearly we were über-excited for this culinary adventure of ours.
So far so good at this point. Mixture was doing its caramelizing thing very nicely...not that we had any idea really though since this was our first time.
We made it to the "hard ball" stage...or at least we thought we did. Don't know what that is? Don't worry, I didn't either. It's just what the recipe said. But thanks to these smarty pants science people, now I do. And if you click on the link, you will too.
Perhaps this "hard ball" stage is the moment it all went wrong. But when we dropped our caramely goo in the bowl of cold water, our ball was just like the aforementioned smarty pants science people said it should be. Firm but maleable, or something like that.
We poured our goo into our waxed paper lined pan. Shout out for wax paper and it's gift of minimal cleanup.
Now, we wait. We went to the gym to help the hours pass since there was no way our impatientness would allow us to sit at home for the required number of hours before we could cut into 'em.
Unfortunately, that only wasted about 30 minutes because neither of us had much interest in busting our booties over Christmas vacay. So we whipped up these little guys instead.
These were Mom's specialty when we were kids, although my new aversion to Crisco left me searching for a recipe ohne nasty fake fat.
Fortunately Joy the Baker came through for us, with a few alterations of course, like putting the chocolate on top and reducing the bake time to 8 minutes for that extra soft gooey deliciousness all cookies should have.
I also subbed vanilla for nutmeg because I prefer the deliciousness of vanilla and think that nutmeg should stick to apple pie and apple pie only. Although I did have a delicious fruit salad once drizzled with orange juice and then sprinkled with nutmeg. I wonder where that recipe is...
Now, back to the caramels. At the exact time the cooling stage was over, we pulled em out and got to work. Riss sliced those suckers like a pro.
Perhaps we made them a tad thin, but for our first attempt we were pretty proud that they at least had edges...but not for long.
The chocolate flattened our nicely shaped blocks into mini pancakes.
Don't judge a book by its cover, or in this case, a caramel by its shape cause they sure were tasty.
Dad found a way to salvage our poor little caramel patties though. Remember those peanut butter cookies?
Turns out the caramels fit perfectly underneath our peanut butter creations.
What could be better than chocolate, peanut butter, and caramel? I mean serioulsy.
Despite Carissa and my best candy making efforts, Dad's ingenious creation reveals who the true culinary master in our family is.
As for my future with salted caramels, I think I'll stick with a more forgiving recipe next time. Like these Salted Caramel Brownies from the Pioneer Woman. Yum!