Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Goat Carmels

What transforms caramels from plain to goaterific? Change the dairy aspect.
The recipe is simple:
1 cup butter
2 cups white Karo syrup
4 cups sugar
{2 cups large cans milk}
 I substitute 3 cups goat milk some years. If made in December our goats naturally have a higher cream ratio since it is in the later part of their lactation so the caramels are very very creamy especially if I use cream. Some years I use half and half or rather half goat cream and half goat milk. This year I used 3 cups of cream since our Meagan is a major cream producer. Next year I hope to remember to use half and half. The caramels are awesome but maybe a bit too rich. Then there is the years that I've used home bottled goats whole milk.
But one thing you can guarantee is that I never use evaporated milk to cook with. I aways use goat milk, cream, half and half as a substitute depending on what I'm making. If you would like to do likewise just remember that a standard can of milk is 1 1/2 cups milk or 12 fluid ounces and a small can is 2/3 a cup or 5 fluid ounces.
What ever type of milk you use, the ticket to making these caramels is to use a really thick pan to prevent burning. These caramels cook FOREVER and if you don't want to be stirring constantly after the mixture begins to boil, use a really thick pot. I have one made of aluminum. This is the only pan I have made with this material since my body absorbs this metal. But hey, caramels aren't exactly nutritious anyway.
When you wish to make this recipe then keep in mind it takes over an hour to cook. Plan to keep busy in the kitchen so you can stir frequently. These are definitely worth the effort. I made multiple batches of jam at the same time.
In a large kettle, melt butter. Add Karo and then sugar. Cook until it boils, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. (I don't need to when I use this heavy, heavy pan.) Add your goat substitute a little at a time so the candy doesn't stop boiling. Continue stirring and cook to firm ball stage (240 Fahrenheit) then pour into a buttered baking dish.  
Cooked for a shorter period of time this makes a great caramel for ice cream.

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