Friday, November 15, 2013

Homemade Rum Caramels

These soft and chewy Homemade Rum Caramels are the real deal! Everything you would want in a caramel, with a delicious hint of rum flavoring. So good....they're like magic!


Well....it's Friday! Which means we made it to the end of the week. Normally that doesn't feel like such a big accomplishment, but on weeks when Jorden is out of town, it most definitely is! It's not that I really mind him being gone (I'm used to holding down the fort by now) it's just that by the end of each day, I'm tired. And by the end of the week, I'm exhausted! And with no one to take over any of the kid duties, I end up crabby. Mostly with my kids....which is never a good feeling.



It's usually just the little things....like tears over clothing and hair and lunch choices and the fact that Nora just colored on Greta's picture....that end up building throughout the week and driving me crazy. But this week it was a little something different. This week, on top of all the little things that are typically enough to put me over the edge, it was homework. LOTS of it! Including a study guide for the math test Ellia has today, which led to numerous conversations about tests...and test anxiety...and why the teacher has to keep saying the word test in class (doesn't she know that calling it a test makes it seem like a REALLY big deal??) Yes, this week we had bigger problems.


To be fair, Ellia wasn't the only one with bigger problems this week. I had some of my own.....and they were all related to these caramels I was set on making! (Okay, maybe not ALL....but the caramels did cause an undue amount of stress!) I will spare you all the details, but let's just say this is my 4th batch....and you're lucky they turned out, because it would have been my last!! After trying 3 different recipes, 2 different candy thermometers, 4 different pans, and about 18 different ways of staying calm, I am happy to report SUCCESS. The caramels turned out soft and chewy and amazing.....just the way I had envisioned them.


As far as my week with the kiddos, and Ellia in particular, I think I might need to revisit some of those 18 ways of staying calm. Because, as much anxiety as Ellia has over test taking, I have an equal level over wanting her to do well! Which doesn't do much to help the situation, now does it? The last thing I want to do as a mom is reinforce the things my kids already struggle with....or, even more, actually make them worse. Lucky for me, we are still at an age where a simple apology makes everything better.


You know what else makes everything better? These Rum Caramels. No kidding, they're like magic. Which makes me extra happy they finally turned out....because if there's one thing I could use every now and then, it's something that will magically make things all better. Kinda like your husband coming home after being gone all week....

Soft & Chewy Rum Caramels
2 c. granulated sugar
1 c. packed brown sugar
1 c. (2 sticks) butter
1 c. milk
1 c. heavy whipping cream
1 c. light corn syrup
1 tsp. rum extract 

1. Line a 9x13 inch pan with foil; butter and set aside.
2. Combine all ingredients except rum extract in a large (4 qt.) saucepan. 
3. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, 15-20 minutes or until butter is melted and mixture comes to a boil.
4. Attach a candy thermometer to the side of the pan. Continue cooking, without stirring, 25-30 minutes or until candy thermometer reaches 244 degrees (firm ball stage).
5. Remove from heat; stir in rum extract. 
6. Pour into prepared pan and cool completely.
7. Cut into small pieces; wrap in wax paper. 
8. Store in the refrigerator.

*Recipe adapted from Land O Lakes' Soft Caramel Recipe

*I found it VERY helpful to test my candy thermometer for accuracy - it made ALL the difference! To test: boil water in a large pot. Thermometer should register at 212 degrees when water starts to boil. When I did this (after 3 failed attempts) I discovered that my thermometer registered at only 200 degrees...meaning I needed to adjust accordingly!

 Enjoy!

Here are a few other holiday treats for you to make and share!

http://www.lemontreedwelling.com/2013/11/no-bake-mint-oreo-fudge.html

http://www.lemontreedwelling.com/2013/03/homemade-skinny-irish-cream.html

http://www.lemontreedwelling.com/2013/11/almond-joy-biscotti.html
  

Thanks for taking a peek inside my Lemon Tree Dwelling...
I hope you feel right at home!

11 comments :

  1. i really like the sound of this... caramels are delicious! and what a nice little gift to take to someone... yum!

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  2. I need to have some of these very soon. ☺

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  3. These look delicious - like the kind I used to get at the penny candy store when I stayed at my Grandparents house when I was five! YUM! I can also tell you that I completely relate to the feelings when the hubby travels - never, ever easy - such a stressful week! AND YOUR 4th batch! I think I will leave this recipe to you my dear friend - I think I would have just drank the bottle of rum instead (I know you can't, just saying ;) Hope you guys have a restful weekend. Ours is 6 hours in the car and a baby shower. Not really looking forward to that "FUN" weekend. Love babies but the carride is a little much!

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  4. hoping you have a relaxing weekend :) this batch looks prefect

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  5. Rum and caramel together? Sounds wonderful. :)
    Blessings,
    Sinea
    Ducks ‘n a Row

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  6. Thank you for doing all the hard work for us! Caramels are so intimidating to me (but I want to make them so badly!) These look perfect!

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  7. These sound so amazing! Making candy can be very difficult, but it is a fun process (most of the time).

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  8. These would make a great gift for Christmas for my mother, she loves caramels!

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  9. Wow. These look SO GOOD Cathy! My Grandma used to make the best caramels and I've always been bummed I never got her recipe and had her teach me. I seriously might have to give these a try even though the whole candy thermometer thing kinda freaks me out! Where did you buy yours? Thanks for sharing this recipe!

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  10. This sounds delicious! I was planning on making caramels next month, but had not thought about adding any extra flavors. Thanks for the tip on testing the candy thermometer. I've had mine for about 3 years, but it's still new in the package :) Hope you and your family have a great week!

    Visiting from Super Saturday Show & Tell

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  11. Shirley @ Intelligent Domestications
    I have got to try making those Rum Flavored Caramels, they look wonderful! I also use Watkins extracts! I came across you from Pinterest, glad to have found all these great recipes to share!

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