One thing that I love about Fall is that it just isn't months of how much pumpkin can I get into everything, but it is also how much apple can I get into everything. These apple cider caramels are the perfect item to add to your list. While making these caramels, you will notice the smell of apples and cinnamon filling your kitchen. The more that the apple cider reduces down, the lovelier your place will smell. These apple cider caramels aren't hard, they are soft, buttery, chewy and full off apple goodness with a hint of sea salt. Amazing!
This recipe makes a lot of little apple cider caramels which makes them perfect for sharing. And if you're like me and lucky enough to live with someone who doesn't enjoy caramel as much as you do, you can eat as much as you'd like without having to hide your stash. But beware, these apple cider caramels will not last long, whether you keep them to yourself or you share them with the ones you love.
4 cups apple cider (I got mine from Trader Joe's)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons flaky sea salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into chunks
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
1/3 cup heavy cream
Neutral oil for knife
1. Boil the apple cider in a 4 quart saucepan over high heat until it is reduced to a dark, thick syrup, between 1/3 and 1/2 cup in volume. This takes about 35 to 40 minutes on my stove. Stir occasionally.
2. Meanwhile, get your other ingredients in order, because you won’t have time to spare once the candy is cooking. Line the bottom and sides of an 8- inch straight- sided square metal baking pan with 2 long sheets of crisscrossed parchment. Set it aside. Stir the cinnamon and flaky salt together in a small dish.
3. Once you are finished reducing the apple cider, remove it from the heat and stir in the butter, sugars, and heavy cream. Return the pot to medium- high heat with a candy thermometer attached to the side, and let it boil until the thermometer reads 252 degrees, only about 5 minutes. Keep a close eye on it.
4. Immediately remove caramel from heat, add the cinnamon- salt mixture, and give the caramel several stirs to distribute it evenly. Pour caramel into the prepared pan. Let it sit until cool and firm—about 2 hours, though it goes faster in the fridge.
5. Once caramel is firm, use your parchment paper sling to transfer the block to a cutting board. Use a well- oiled knife, oiling it after each cut (trust me!), to cut the caramel into 1-by-1-inch squares. Wrap each one in a 4-inch square of waxed paper, twisting the sides to close.