Memories-Every Autumn I can remember having one Family home evening where we made Caramel and all sat around the kitchen table dipping apple chunks into the pot of hot caramel. The anticipation was always unbearable, we were always a big sticky mess by the end of the night, our tummies hurt and the left overs never stuck around for long.
My Mom would cut the apples into bite sized pieces and put them all in a big bowl next to the caramel pot. We would each get a small plate and a fork. We stab the apples with our fork, dip in it and laugh every time the caramel would slip off the apple bite.
Each year while we cooked it my Mom would tell us stories about when she was a teenager and worked in a candy shop. She had to cut the fudge and other candies to be perfect squares and always ate the pieces that didn't measure up. She'd also tell us about her grandmother who made fudge and would store it in the freezer in the basement. Great Grandma Dradge used to say that the fudge would come alive and call to her and by the time she needed it, it was always gone. And no Bryant Family Christmas party was complete without the exchange of homemade candies. The regulars were caramel, divinity and fudge. And the conversation always consisted of the Bryant Men discussing how many batches they had to make before their candy turned out, or what changes they made to the recipe that year. :) Hmmm, I wonder where I get my junk food eating habits?
It's been a while since I've been able to make caramel for fall. So My friend Aimee and I made some and chowed down. It was SO yummy and I thought I should post the recipe.
1/2 cup butter
2 cups 1/2 and 1/2
3/4 cup light corn syrup
2 cups sugar
- Mix only 1 cup of the 1/2 and 1/2 with the rest of the ingredients in a large pot on the stove. Siring consistently, heat until the mixture boils.
- Once the mixture reaches boiling add the remaining cup of 1/2 and 1/2.
- Siring frequently, cook over medium heat with a candy thermometer in it. It will look like the picture here for a long time
- Once it reaches 245 degrees remove the pot from the heat and continue stirring until the mixture stops bubbling. The mixture will be golden, but it probably won't look right until it stops bubbling so don't be worried about that. DON'T OVER COOK!!! it can quickly climb a few extra degrees, so when the temperature looks close to being done, don't leave it alone! (It can take a long time to reach 245 degrees and you don't want to end up with burned caramel because you weren't paying enough attention at the end.)
- 245 degrees is VERY HOT! Allow it to cool for about 5 minutes, then you can dip apples in it. I think the easiest way to eat caramel apples is to cut some tart apples into slices and put a few spoonfuls into a small bowl to spoon out of.
- When the caramel is no longer warm, it is very thick and difficult to manipulate. When you are done eating it with apples, pour the remaining caramel into a buttered pan. The next morning cut the caramels into small bite sized pieces and wrap them in wax paper.