Friday, January 1, 2016

Caramels topped with Prosecco Salt for New Year's

Happy New Year!  

These soft caramels, sprinkled with homemade prosecco salt, make a festive twist on traditional homemade caramels for your New Year's celebration, a nice addition to any New Year's Day Brunch Table. They also make a great hostess gift.  There's still time to make them today if you have caught this post early enough.

A few years ago I saw a fantastic post on Well Preserved on how to make wine salt with leftover holiday wine. I immediately wanted to try it with champagne or prosecco. It took awhile for me to get here but finally the time was right. 

If you have a leftover bottle of prosecco from Christmas, make the salt. It adds a nice flavor  and a pretty light golden yellow color to the salt. You can easily halve the recipe as it makes way more than you need for the caramels. A nice idea is to divide up the leftover prosecco sea salt into little gift packages and give it out as party favors to your guests. 

In addition to the prosecco salt, I sprinkled some sugar pearls and edible golden stars on top of the caramel to make them more festive.

The caramel recipe is one I use all the time. If I don't get (ahem) distracted while making them, the caramels come out perfect every time. 

Caramels topped with Prosecco Salt


For the Prosecco Salt:
  • 1 bottle of prosecoo
  • 1+1/2 cups sea salt
For the Caramels:
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 5 tbsp unsalted butter, cut into pieces
  • 2 tsp procecco salt, plus more for garnishing the top
  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup light corn syrup
  • 1/4 cup water
  • Edible pearls/stars

For the prosecco salt:

(Very slightly adapted from this recipe by Well Preserved)

  • Pour the prosecco into a saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, then reduce the heat to low and simmer the prosecco. It will take about 30 minutes to reduce the liquid if you are using a full bottle of prosecco. HOWEVER: Make sure you watch it closely towards the end. The liquid will discolor and burn very quickly if you are not careful.
  • When the liquid becomes a thick syrup, remove it from the heat. 
  • Pour 1 cup of salt into the pan. Stir to absorb the wine. Add the other 1/2 cup of salt a bit at a time until the liquid has absorbed all the salt.
  • Transfer the mixture to a flat plate. Use a rubber spatula to spread the mixture out on the plate.
  • After covering the caramels, you can store the excess salt in a covered jar. 

Make the Caramels:
(Recipe by The Kitchen via The Cookin Canuck)
  • Line the bottom and sides of an 8- x 8-inch baking pan with parchment paper, making sure the paper overlaps the sides of the pan on all sides.
  • Brush the bottom and the sides lightly with vegetable oil.
  • Place the heavy cream, butter, and 2 teaspoons prosecco salt In a small saucepan and bring to a boil, stirring to combine. Remove from the heat and set aside.
  • Place the sugar, corn syrup, and water in a large, heavy saucepan set over medium heat with a candy thermometer attached to the side. 
  • Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring. Once the sugar is dissolved, do not stir again.  Cook the mixture until the temperature reaches 248 degrees F. Swirl the pan occasionally but do not stir.
  • slowly pour the cream mixture in.  Watch out because the mixture will bubble up considerably. That's normal. Continue to simmer, swirling the mixture frequently, for 15-25 minutes, or until the caramel thickens and turns golden brown. While simmering, keep your eye on the thermometer and do not allow the temperature go higher than 250 degrees F.
  • Pour the cooked caramel into the prepared pan. Let the caramel cool for 2 hours. While the caramel is still slightly warm press some grains of prosecco salt into the surface, then scatter the sugar pearls/stars over the top.
  • When the caramel has completely cooled, Cut into 1-inch pieces and wrap each into squares. 

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