12 Days of Holiday Gifts: Homemade Caramels
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Sure, you can buy candy for friends and family this holiday season, but why not add a special homemade touch? We’ve got 3 winning caramel recipes and a video from Alton Brown to help walk you through the simple steps.
Made with sugar, butter, corn syrup and cream, caramels aren’t health food, but it’s the holidays! And since a 1-ounce piece will only set you back about 110 calories, there’s no need to feel guilty.
Caramels aren't difficult to make, they just require a little care and attention. The trickiest part? Getting the sugar to just the right color -- watch carefully! Melt sugar with a little corn syrup until it's golden brown, like the one pictured below. Swirl, don't stir the sugar as it cooks.
See Ina Garten's full caramel step-by-step for the whole process. Extracts, seasonings and spices can add flavors without extra calories. Here are a few recipes to try:
Wrap caramels in parchment or wax paper and store in small tins or candy boxes. Pack along with cookies, gourmet coffee or tea, a bottle of dessert wine, or even some tart apples.
Dana Angelo White, MS, RD, ATC, is a registered dietitian, certified athletic trainer and owner of Dana White Nutrition, Inc., which specializes in culinary and sports nutrition. See Dana's full bio »