these are dreamy little nuggets of gold.
if you thought you couldn't make candy or just didn't want to attempt it due to the potential sticky mess that could occur ( and will at some point), don't be afraid...jump in...i did.
wake up that candy lovin' kid in you and start out with some caramels. i started out with a recipe i found here that i think i first saw on tastespotting.com.
THANK YOU "WITHOUTSALT.COM"
my first attempt with this exact recipe was a success. they came out tasting unreal and everybody was amazed. i must say, being my first attempt, i liked them, but i would have liked the caramel just a smidge harder. as i explain in the bacon, black salt carmel post, i was so excited to make these that i went down to the nearest super market and bought a cheap thermometer that subsequently melted during the crucial stage of soft ball, hard ball and firm ball. needless to say...get yourself a proper thermometer.
i found that caramel, unlike brittles or chocolates, can be much more forgiving and you have just a bit more time to play with it. as a matter of fact, i just now finished making bacon strips dipped in caramel...then crushed salted peanuts...then dipped in chocolate (the caramel stage was sprinkled with some cayenne). we'll see if i can get a shot of those before they disappear, huh?!
so, just start out as i did with the recipe from withoutsalt.com. leave out the bacon, if that scares you...and you'll find this base caramel recipe an easy and tasty one.
i almost forgot...for this recipe i started off with the base carmel recipe...poured it into a buttered 2 qt. pyrex. then immediatly started putting huge Virginia salted roasted peanuts on top. i pushed a few of them down with a tooth pick (and my finger-being careful, it's hot). i opted not to put the peanuts in before pouring because i wanted control of peanut spacing...i guess it's a control issue? then lightly sprinkled with the black salt...careful, because black salt seemes to be a bit powerful and the peanuts are salted. for another batch i made last week, i sprinkled chopped arbol chilis for a yummy spicy kick. so try anything you want, as i said caramel is forgiving AND a great blank canvass for all sorts of flavors.