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Apple Cider Vinegar Caramels

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52 weeks of baking – Candy

Everyone makes mistakes in the kitchen, miss read a recipe and measure a cup of salt instead of sugar, burn something, undercook it or make a giant splattery mess. I’ve made my fair share of mistakes, but mostly I’ve been able to tweak the dish and get by with something mediocre instead of terrible. But there was this one time that I miss read a recipe and didn’t notice my mistake until I went to make it for a second time, my mistake made them better.

I love vinegar, all types, but a good unfiltered apple cider vinegar is my favorite. When I first came across this recipe for apple cider caramels my vinegar loving brain just filled in the blank. I read the list of ingredients quickly, 2 cups of apple cider vinegar reduced to 1/3 of a cup, check. Oooh that sounds like a great idea, some tart vinegar to cut through all the sweetness of the caramel. So I reduced the vinegar, stunk up the house a little in the processes and made the candy just as the recipe said. They were, and are, spectacular! So much good apple flavor and the vinegar doesn’t hit you strong, it creates an unexpected tartness to an otherwise sweet treat.

I felt really silly when I made these a second time and realized the mistake I had made the first time around. I gave the original recipe a try with just apple cider, they were good, but not as good, not enough apple flavor came through for me, so I stick with the vinegar now. I’ve even tried other vinegars too, raspberry vinegar with a pinch of cardamom was really great and I bet a blackberry vinegar with ginger would be good too.

 












Apple Cider Vinegar Caramels


  • Yield:
    50+ pieces of candy
  • Category:

Ingredients

  • 2 c apple cider vinegar
  • 2/3 c heavy cream
  • 6 tbsp. butter
  • 1 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 c sugar
  • 1/4 c corn syrup
  • 1/4 c water
  • 1/2 tsp. finishing salt
  • parchment paper

Directions

  1. In a small pot reduce the 2 cups of apple cider vinegar to 1/3 of a cup. Before I put the vinegar in the pot I measure 1/3 cup of water and pour it in so I have an idea of how much a 1/3 cup looks like in the pot I used. Once the vinegar has reduced set it aside.
  2. In a microwave safe container heat the heavy cream, butter and cinnamon until the butter has melted and the mixture is steamingt. Set aside until the sugar has been caramelized.
  3. Prepare an 8×8-inch pan by lining it with two pieces of parchment paper to create a sling.
  4. In a medium pot heat the sugar, corny syrup and water over medium heat, do not stir, once everything is liquid you can swirl it occasionally to even out the color. Cook the sugar until it is a dark amber color, don’t take it too far or it might taste burnt.
  5. Remove from the heat and add the heavy cream mixture and vinegar, it will bubble and boil up so be prepared for there to be a lot of steam.
  6. Cook the caramel mixture for about 10 minutes on medium low heat until a candy thermometer reads 250F.
  7. Pour the caramel into the prepared pan and let cool for 5 minutes before sprinkling with salt if desired. Let cool about 2 hours and then cut into squares and wrap in clean parchment paper.

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