Many, many, many Christmases ago (okay, maybe it was only 8-ish years, but it feels like way more), I decided it would be fun to whip up about 8-10 different holiday treats for about a dozen different families. I went all out, for real. I got these adorable little candy-striped boxes, and holiday bags and set to work making cookies, caramels, candies, meringues, chocolate bark, etc, etc, etc. You get the point, I made a LOT of treats. And I packaged them up all in their little boxes and bags, each treat in it’s own designated container. And I carefully packed each set in a box and shipped the goodie boxes out to out-of-town family and friends. And when I was done, I swore off all baked goods (that lasted until about January).
The truth is: I love baking. I love candy making. But, it’s not sustainable and healthy to only do that and never cook. So I’m trying, really I am, to get some non-sweets on the blog right now, but my gosh, the holidays make that SO hard. So today, I gave in. Today is for sweets. I do have a couple actual real-food recipes in the queue, I’ll try to expedite them for you because they are too good to keep to myself.
Now back to sweets. A couple months ago, I ordered some Cocomels in my Thrive box (have you signed up yet?) because I try to always put a “mom treat” in my order. That set in motion a rekindled love of caramels for me. I had been wanting to make some again but never got around to it. That is until last week. While browsing Pinterest, as I often do, I came across some Apple Cider Caramels and I was all “Wha? That’s amazing!”. So I promptly ran to Whole foods and grabbed two more jugs of cold-pressed apple cider (well, I needed some for drinking too!).
The first moment I had an hour to spare, I quickly scrubbed a pot (what, you think my kitchen is always clean?!) and got to boiling. These caramels could not have come out any better. I am so in love with them. I also can’t stop eating them, so I brought them to a friend’s house and “accidentally” forget them in her fridge so I will stop gorging on them. She’ll thank me later…
I prefer tiny little chunks of caramel, so I cut mine on the smaller side, about 1/2″ x 1″, that way I don’t feel bad when I eat a bunch because they’re so tiny, literally bite-size, so it’s okay. Right? Just tell me it is.
And when you make these, pay close attention to the last step. It’s important. Trust me.