So today I am making fruit and nut caramels which are amazingly easy. I am starting with a cup of sugar right into my pot, a cup of heavy cream, a very low-fat recipe, half a cup of corn syrup, right into my pot, and about three tablespoons of butter.
What that butter is going to do is really add richness to our caramels. Nice, softened butter. Now, all I am going to do is bring this to a boil on the stove and keep cooking until it becomes a nice, golden brown. So, my caramel is ready to go. It is very light in color, but that is what we are looking for. We are looking for something that is a little lighter than your traditional caramel. Think of it as a nice tan color. OK.
If we go too hard, the problem is that when you go to cut your caramels, they are going to be so firm you are not going to be able to get nice, chewy bits of caramel. You are going to have really hard pieces of caramel. So, all I am going to do is add in my final ingredient which is a nice mix of fruit and nuts. Use any kind that you like. This is a nice mix of cranberries, I have some pumpkin seeds, some pistachios, some almonds, just kind of throw them in there.
It is about a cup of fruit and nuts, and I am just going to save some of them to sprinkle over the top so we will give it a really nice finishing look. Last thing is a little bit of sea salt. I am using a kosher salt. Be generous. You will find that will really bring out the flavor of everything that is in there especially the caramel. So, again, it is going to look super light.
Remember that it is going to keep cooking a little bit as it cools down. So, don't be afraid of the color. But, I am going to go right into a six inch pan here, or if you have a nice loaf pan that would be great. I am just going to fill that up, and then just finish it off by sprinkling the rest of my fruit and nuts right over the top. I really like mine chock full of fruit and nuts. I feel like that is the best part. And this is the perfect candy to keep wrapped up and keep in your purse. It is a good pick me up.
It is actually not so bad for you because you are only having a little bit of caramel and lots of really good fruit and nuts in there. And, if you like, a little extra sea salt over the top. And that is it.
So, I am going to chill this. You can pop it into the freezer, or you can leave it at room temperature overnight. Just wrap it up with a nice piece of plastic wrap. And then it is going to be ready to cut.
So, I have my caramels nice and cool and ready to cut. You can see they are really firm. So, I am going to take my knife, and I am just going to go ahead and give it a good slice. I am going to make little rectangles, but you could do any shape that you like. You could do little squares. You could do little triangles. But, all I am going to do is nice slices in one direction. Mine are about half an inch wide, and then I am just going to turn it around, trim off the edge, and do small slices in the other direction. Then you have these beautiful little candies. Delicious.
And that is how you make fruit and nut caramels.