Sweets for the Sweets
Last Christmas, I made several different kinds of cookies. One was a turtle cookie with caramel, chocolate and nuts. I am not a huge candy person, but I love the creamy buttery sweetness of caramel. Because I like caramel so much, I had to bake these cookies. According to the recipe, I needed to melt those little individually wrapped caramel candies you find at the store. Unfortunately, they don’t sell these types of caramels in Germany. Caramel is different here than in the States, so I looked for a how-to recipe for making caramel. For an hour, I constantly mixed (with the help of my husband) the water and sugar while it cooked and changed into many different forms. The caramel hardened to the pot, which was a pain to clean and my arm ached for several days
In January, my sister sent me this link on Facebook and it resolved my caramel struggles. How to make caramel in a can. LOVE IT!!! So, here is my rendition of caramel in a can.
Buy a can(s) of sweetened condensed milk. We found small cans for individual portion size. Peel the label off, and if you can, try to remove the label glue from the can.
Fill a small pot with water and place the cans in the pot. Use a metal pot, so you can see the cans, and make sure the water covers the top of the cans. This is important. The water must cover the top of the cans at all times. It can be difficult to see how much water is covering them, so I touch the top of the can with a butter knife every 1/2 hour to check. Bring the water to a boil, and then simmer for 3 to 3-1/2 hours. I have an electric stove with temperatures ranging from one to nine. I boil it at nine and then turn it down to five. The first time I made it, I turned it down to three, but it didn’t cook long enough so I make sure the cans are moving around the pot.
When the time is up, let the cans cool for several hours. The video suggests six hours or overnight. It only takes a few hours for the small cans to cool. After it cools, open the can and voila! Caramel! What once was white condensed milk is now caramel.
I love all kinds of potatoes and different ways to cook them; baked, mashed, salad, and homemade fries. Here’s my secret to making the best mashed potatoes. Add ½ or a full sweet potato, depending on how many regular potatoes you use, cook with the regular potatoes, and mash. The sweet potato adds so much flavor to them.
Since I like potatoes, I’m always looking for new recipes and I found a DEELISH one. The original recipe called for buttery or russet potatoes. At the time I made these, I only had red potatoes in the house, so that’s what I used.
Preheat the oven at 425 F (220 C). Wash the potatoes to get all the schmutz off them. With a sharp knife, cut a lengthwise slice of the potato so it will lay nicely on the tray. You can add the slices to the tray and cook with the potatoes.Then you cut slices (not lengthwise) into the potato, only going down ¾ of the potato. For a large potato, you should have about 20 to 30 cuts. Yes, I know. My pictures could use some fixing to make the potato look more appetizing. I’ll work on it in the future. Melt some butter and brush it all over the potatoes, even underneath it. Season the potatoes to your liking. I seasoned these potatoes with Himalayan salt, pepper, garlic, and rosemary.Put in the oven for 30 minutes. Take out after 30 minutes, brush them again with butter, add more seasonings if you’d like, and put them back in the oven for another 30 minutes.