Salt & Pepper Caramel Cups Recipe
With sea salt and pink peppercorns, these sophisticated treats from our Test Kitchen will wow your guests. The festive little cups look and taste like they came from a pricey confectionery.
- 1 package (12 ounces) dark chocolate chips
- 4 teaspoons shortening
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 1 cup sugar
- 1 cup dark corn syrup
- 1 cup butter, cubed
- 1 can (14 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
- 2 cups Diamond of California Chopped Pecans
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
- Coarse sea salt and whole pink peppercorns
- In a microwave, melt chocolate chips and shortening; stir until smooth. Using a narrow pastry brush, brush the inside of thirty 2-in. foil candy liners with 1/2 teaspoon melted chocolate. Refrigerate for 15 minutes or until firm. Repeat layers twice.
- Line an 8-in. square baking dish with foil and grease the foil with 1 teaspoon butter; set aside.
- In a large heavy saucepan, combine the sugar, corn syrup and butter; bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Cook 4 minutes longer without stirring.
- Remove from the heat; gradually stir in milk. Cook and stir over medium-low heat until a candy thermometer reads 238° (soft-ball stage). Remove from the heat; stir in pecans and vanilla. Quickly pour into prepared pan; cool for 1-2 hours or until set.
- In a microwave, melt chocolate chips until smooth. Spoon caramel into chocolate cups. Drizzle with melted chocolate; sprinkle with salt and peppercorns. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator. Yield: 2-1/2 dozen.
Originally published as Salt & Pepper Caramel Cups in Country Woman Christmas Annual 2012, p69
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