National Caramel Day
Caramel Lovers, Beware! April 5th is National Caramel Day and who doesn’t like Caramels? Not everyone loves them, but I can’t imagine not liking them. Caramel can come in many forms. Candy, Sauce, Toppings for Ice Cream, Covering for Apples and glue for Popcorn. Incidentally, tomorrow April 3rd is National Caramel Popcorn Day. In addition to sweets caramelization also occurs in cooked food such as onions, apples, even meats. Caramelization adds wonderful flavor to most foods and all it takes is a little bit of sugar and some heat. With some foods, like onions, the sugar occurs naturally and does not have to be added to get the caramelization.
Many popular candy bars are made with Caramel; just go look in the supermarket candy section and you will discover which ones.
A favorite South American Cookie, called Alfajores is also made with Caramel of Dulce de Leche as it is known in Latin Countries. Alfajores are a vanilla cookies sandwiched with Caramel in the middle.
You can buy Caramel Candy in the Supermarket, at the Drugstore or the Candy Store. It just depends in what form you would like to have it. One of my favorites are caramel covered marshmallows. Just heavenly and even better when you keep them in the freezer.
To make Caramel, the general way to do it is to melt some sugar in a saute pan (copper is best, but stainless with a copper or aluminum bottom will also work.) over medium-high heat. Once it melts and starts to color, remove from the heat until you are ready to finish it. When you are ready, add some very heavy cream and cook and stir until all the ingredients are combined. This will results in a very delicious Caramel Sauce.
Since today was National Caramel Day, I also made some Cashew Caramel. To make the Caramel, I heated some granulated sugar in a medium fring pan until it liquified and then I added a small amount of heavy cream. Once the Cream was blended in, I then added the Cashews (roasted, salted ones). Once all the Cashews were covered with the Caramel, I poured the mixture onto a non-stick baking sheet that was placed on a cookie sheet. The mixture was then allowed to set up. If you love Caramel and Cashews as I do, then this is a very good confection to have.
For Caramel Apples and Popcorn Balls, try the Easy Caramel Recipe under our Recipe Section, candy/caramel/
For more Caramel, don’t forget that April 6th is National Caramel Popcorn Day. Another American favorite!