I knew this was to be my 200th official post so I really wanted to try something special and out of my comfort zone. I’ve had a candy thermometer in the kitchen drawer for probably two years now with the intention of making some sort of candy. I was intending to make my ultimate treat; home made marshmallows but then I saw this recipe pop up on the bon apetit feed and I knew I would be squeezing in just one more recipe for treats before we left for the farm.
On first glance the recipe doesn’t look that involved but I will tell you to read it thoroughly, then read it again (make a list, check it twice sort of thing). Since this was my first time making candy I should have read the recipe better but I just thought I could throw it together. In hindsight, there probably is a reason you need to cut up the butter into small pieces. And I’m guessing (!) maybe, just maybe it’s because if you just lob the whole stick into the super hot sugar mixture, it super cools and forms into one huge solid blob that rips apart your whisk. Yikes. Luckily, I didn’t throw the whole mess out and was able to get the blob back up to temperature so that I could carefully break it apart being very careful not to splash molten sugar all over my self. One burn for the holiday season is enough and that’s a story for another day.
Honey Jack Salted Caramels
2 cups sugar
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup light corn syrup
1 14 oz can condensed milk
1/2 cup unsalted butter cut into small pieces
1/2 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp Honey Jack Daniels (bon apetit used bourbon)
Flaky sea salt
Lightly coat an 8×8” baking pan with nonstick spray and line with parchment paper, leaving a 2” overhang on 2 sides; spray parchment.
Bring sugar, corn syrup, and ¼ cup water to a boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, stirring to dissolve sugar. Cook, swirling pan occasionally, until mixture turns a deep amber color, 8–10 minutes.
Remove pan from heat and whisk in sweetened condensed milk and butter (mixture will bubble vigorously) until smooth. Fit pan with thermometer and return to medium-low heat. Cook, whisking constantly, until thermometer registers 240°. Remove from heat and whisk in JD and kosher salt. Pour into prepared pan; let cool. Sprinkle caramel with sea salt, cut into ¾” pieces, and wrap individually in parchment paper.
DO AHEAD: Caramels can be made 2 weeks ahead. Store wrapped tightly in plastic in airtight container at room temperature.