Salted Whiskey Caramels

Submitted by: Bacalao Restaurant - Downhome Magazine
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Difficulty: Easy
Prep Time: More than 15 Minutes
Total Time: More than 1 hour

5 tbsp butter
1 cup whipping cream
2 oz of your favourite whisky
1/4 tsp kosher (coarse) salt
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup water
1 tbsp coarse sea salt
Line a 9-inch square pan with parchment paper, leaving enough overhang to grip and lift out the caramels later; spray with cooking spray.
In a 1-quart pot, bring to a boil the butter, cream, whisky and salt, stirring frequently. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla, set aside. (Don't be tempted to use too small a pot as it could boil up and over.) In a large pot (3 quarts or bigger) over medium-high heat, without stirring, bring to a boil the sugar, corn syrup and water. Clip on a candy thermometer, continue to cook until the mixture reaches 310F. Add cream mixture. Continue to cook, beating with a whisk, until thermometer reads 248F. Pour caramel into pan; cool 10 minutes to allow top to firm up a bit, then sprinkle with sea salt. Allow it to cool completely, but be careful if you refrigerate, as the caramel might become too brittle to cut. You'll want to cut it while it's firm but not brittle. A tiny bit of give when you press on the top is perfect - and you can feel the bottom of the pan to check if it's completely cool.

Gripping the edges of the parchment, lift the caramel out of the pan and place on a cutting board. With a sharp knife, wiping well between cuts (it will get sticky), make 5 even cuts horizontally and vertically (creating 6 columns each way) and forming 36 squares. Place in mini muffin cups, or wrap with parchment or plastic, and store at cool room temperature in an airtight container.

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