A cousin passed this quick and easy recipe on to me. We make it every Christmas and include the caramels in gift baskets we share with family and friends.
- 1 teaspoon plus 1/4 cup butter, divided
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup light corn syrup
- 1 cup evaporated milk
- 1 cup chopped nuts
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Melted chocolate, optional
- Line a 9-in.-square baking pan with foil; grease foil with 1 teaspoon butter.
- In a large heavy saucepan, combine sugar, corn syrup, milk and remaining butter. Cook and stir over medium heat until a candy thermometer reads 238° (soft–ball stage).
- Using a pastry brush dipped in water, wash down the sides of the pan to eliminate sugar crystals. Cook and stir until thermometer reads 248° (firm-ball stage).
- Remove from heat; stir in nuts and vanilla. Immediately pour into prepared pan (do not scrape saucepan). Let stand until firm.
- Using foil, lift candy out of pan; remove foil. Using a buttered knife, cut caramel into 1-in. squares. If desired, drizzle with chocolate. Let stand until set. Yield: 1-1/2 pounds.
Originally published as Nutty Caramels in Country Woman Christmas Annual 2006, p65
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