Every week we’ll post a recipe that we both made. This week’s recipe was Microwave Caramels, found over at Food.com. Printable recipe can be found at the bottom of this post.
You know? Just… you know? You see a recipe, and you think “Hey, I like caramels! This looks easy! I’ll see if Nance wants to make them!” and then Nance is all “I didn’t even bother to look at the recipe, sure, sounds good, WHATEVER” and off we go.
I’m pretty sure this can all be blamed on Nance for not saying “Are you out of your goddamn mind, idiot?”
YOUR FAULT, NANCE.
So, yes. To recap: I saw the recipe, I had some sort of aneurysm that made me think it would be a good idea to give that motherfucker a try, and then Nance approved. Nance’s fault. JUST SAYIN’.
Ingredients: half a cup each of brown sugar, white sugar, sweetened condensed milk, corn syrup, and 1/4 cup of butter. The recipe didn’t state whether the butter should be melted first, so after extensive consultation with Fred, I decided to melt it.
That’s probably where it all went wrong.
Mix everything together in a microwave-safe bowl
Microwave that shit for 6 minutes, stirring after every 2 minutes. I took no pictures of this part. Y’all just use your imagination.
When the six minutes is up, pour that hot hot hot stuff into a buttered dish. The recipe didn’t indicate the size of the dish (SLOPPY RECIPE) so I used my 8×8 Pyrex. Which I buttered the SHIT out of. There was a ton of butter coating the inside of that dish, believe me. I know I’ve covered my hatred of things sticking to things. (FORESHADOWING.)
Cool the hell out of that stuff. I let it cool on the counter for six hours, and then I put it in the fridge for another couple of hours. And then I tried to get it out of the dish.
I tried a little piece of it, and the flavor was good, but it was so fucking sticky I had to scrape it off my teeth with a butter knife.
This is the part where, while having a temper tantrum, I almost tossed the whole goddamn dish in the trash. But I like that dish – it’s so HANDY – that I scraped the dish clean(ish), tossed the shitheap of sticky fucking caramel in the trash, and let the dishwasher clean the dish the rest of the way.
I’ll just buy my damn caramels at the grocery store. Hmph.
(If you point out that caramel is supposed to be sticky, I will hunt you down and set fire to your car. Yes, caramels are sticky. NOT THAT STICKY.)
This quick and easy recipe actually took me 3 days to make.
On the first day, I laid everything out to start making it when my son, Alex, called. By the time I got off the phone, I had to put everything away because it was time for bed. I thought I would make it quickly on Wednesday morning, write about it, and have a post up by Wednesday afternoon. I had a plan.
On Wednesday, I laid everything out again to make it when my aunt called. Next thing you know, Shirley and I were making a mad dash to clean up the house because hello, we’re getting a visit from the family! I ended up emailing Robyn from my late afternoon doctor’s appointment (I just made it there in time!) to tell her that I was not going to have an entry up until much later that evening. She covered my ass with her sweet potato casserole and said to just post the entry on Friday. I may be stupid about some things, but I sure know how to pick good friends (aka: procrastination enablers)!
Felina does not approve of these shenanigans.
On Thursday I got everything out again, decided that I was going to make a double batch and dumped it all in the bowl. I had been having problems with my left ear and it picked this exact time to get the best of me. I walked the hell away from everything so I could put a heated pad over my ear for some relief. That’s when Shirley stepped in and took over while Rick snapped pictures. Which is why there aren’t many pictures of this process. Ahem.
Since I doubled the recipe, Shirley doubled the time in the microwave. It took 12 minutes, with stirring at 2 minute intervals. Not bad.
I covered an old cookie sheet with foil and buttered the hell out of it. I also keep butter in the refrigerator just for buttering dishes. It’s handy. Robyn does it. Everybody does it. Well, maybe not Amanda. But she should. And could. If she really wanted to. But there isn’t much of a recipe to it. You just throw what you don’t use in the refrigerator so you have it for buttering dishes. See, not much of a recipe at all. I’m probably going to get the Official Seal of Non-Approval by Amanda now. Sigh.
We covered the top with plastic wrap and left it in the refrigerator overnight because it was taking forever to harden up. This is the next day. Some people (Shirley!) cannot leave well enough alone. She picked and picked at it and that’s why it is missing a huge chunk and the foil is ripped up.
I put parchment paper over the top and flipped it over on to the counter (the plastic wrap had been taken off and thrown away by my impatient mother-know my pain) and I was out of wax paper.
The buttered foil peeled away easily.
We had no idea what type of utensil to use to cut this with. I was the one that picked the pizza cutter. All of them were a pain in the ass. Caramel is sticky. Go figure.
I decided I was going to wrap these in parchment paper since I was out of wax paper and had no interest in going to the grocery store.
There’s a reason I never rolled my own joints (marijuana, Mom) in high school.
This big ol’ knife worked pretty good. On the right side you can see where I told Rick to sprinkle some sea salt because I wanted to try salted caramels. Um, yeah. Apparently Rick thought I was trying to cure a ham. Maybe next time.
My mother was cutting while I was wrapping (the pizza cutter ended up working well for us). She was just tossing that shit over at me and working my last nerve because it was a sticky mess to deal with. Look at what she did up there. Right on the edge of the plastic wrap. Grr! I can only assume that wax paper would have been the way to go, but dammit, I said I was NOT going to the grocery store!
Felina inspects Shirley’s wrapping technique.
As usual, she’s willing to take one for the team. That’s her long ass tongue on the left side of my thumb. She’s the Gene Simmons (KISS) of the chihuahua world. She’s such a rock star! And also an artist (Van Gogh). Where’s your other ear, Felina?
Sadie also gave it a shot. They both found it to be quite tasty.
We all really liked it, but it was a pain in the ass to work with.
It’s a quick and easy recipe just like it says. My mom did stir in a few teaspoons of vanilla right before she poured it out on the cookie sheet. The next time I make it I’ll double the recipe, but I think I’ll use a 9 x 13
pain pan so that it’s a little bit thicker. And I’m hoping you guys have some good cutting and wrapping techniques for me because I didn’t have a clue!
- ¼ cup butter
- ½ cup white sugar
- ½ cup brown sugar
- ½ cup light Karo syrup
- ½ cup sweetened condensed milk
- Mix all ingredients in a microwave-safe bowl.
- Microwave on high for six minutes, stirring every two minutes.
- Stir and pour into a well greased dish (Robyn used an 8x8 Pyrex)
- Let cool.
- Cut, wrap in wax paper (good fucking luck with that), and store in an airtight container.
Lining the pan with foil NEVER occurred to me. I bet the whole thing would have turned out differently for me if I had done it that way. 🙂 (But I’m still NOT trying it again!)
Okaaaay, but they’re really, really good.
So are the ones from this bag of Brach’s in my desk drawer. 😀
Dude, go ahead and eat your chemicals! WHATEVER.
I’m just sitting up here eating my salt-cured caramels…please remind me next week when I complain of bloat and water gain what has happened.
I’d think that would be some rare tropical disease like beri-beri. Nothing you could have planned for, totally out of the blue.
So confession: I kind of love it when you ladies post a recipe that didn’t work out 100% because I’m still giggling (officemates think I’m a loony, as usual). The part about curing a ham was the final straw and I busted out laughing. Love it!
I would also love to hear how people deal with the stickiness of these kinds of foods. I made marshmallows recently and despite all the flour I used on the sides of my dish, that stuff was completely determined to not come out of the dish once it was set.
As for cutting…I find that running my knife under hot water before I slice into something sticky helps to make a clean cut. I think the hot water heats up and lubricates (ew, that’s probably not the right word to use, right?) the knife at the same time. The heat makes slicing easier and the lubrication (ugh, I’m grossing myself out now…there has to be a better word for this) keeps the stuff from sticking.
Tina, keep the KY out of the kitchen, for god’s sake. 😛
Sticky food drives me nuts and leads me to throw temper tantrums.
Robyn, I saw your comment before I saw Tina’s (email) and I was all scared shitless that there was some real raunch going on up in here when KY was mentioned. Sheesh!
And Tina, I am not great with figuring out how to cut sticky stuff, but I do follow the theory that the colder the item is, the easier it is to cut. Like cheese, etc. That’s probably no help at all with the marshmallows (did it once, made a mess, never again!), huh?
I just realized I mentioned cutting the cheese. I am no better than you fools are. 😉
You could throw some powdered sugar on it to take one for the team and defeat the stickyness.
You know, for some reason, I always consider using powdered sugar to be overload. But thinking about it, it’s just throwing sugar on top of a heaping pile of more sugar anyway, right? Oldcat, I have seen the light!
Hahahahahahaha, again! A+ on presentation, Nance. Robyn? Sorry. Also, that first picture of Felina is hilarious.
I’m wondering if anybody noticed that Felina has a piece of caramel on the right side of her snout. She was taste-testing.
Next time, I’d just make it in a dish it could stay in and just eat it by the spoonfulls straight from there. 🙂 I’m classy that way though….
If Robyn were smart (Oh, too easy so I won’t go there)…
She should have thrown the whole shebang back into the microwave and ate it warm over ice cream.
Which makes me wonder if I’m the only one here that knows how to stay connected to her inner fat chick! Y’all need to embrace that shit.
This might be the first time that Robyn’s version contains more f-bombs than Nance’s version. These look delicious. I chuckled a lot. 🙂
Don’t let Robyn fool you, she’s a real piece of work. I actually just use the swears in order to portray the bad one here. That’s the deal we have because she likes to pretend innocence so everyone thinks she’s the nice one. I can’t help it if she can’t totally conceal who she really is all the time. ROTTEN, that one. 😉
Spectacularly impressive results on Nance’s end and hilariously sweary ones on Robyn’s, but Nance, I’ve searched everywhere for a 9 x 13 pain. Please don’t tell me I have to venture into a dodgy, ill-lit cavern filled with terrifying, leather-chapped chaps. (Cue Robyn singing “Whip It.”)
Please note that your mind went straight from pain to leather chaps and robyn singing WHIP IT when it could have just been a mind slip about what a pain in the ass it is to make caramels. What is wrong with you people and your filthy minds?! 😀
— It’s obviously my payback for mocking Robyn for using the Force to make her sweet potato casserole.
“May the Fork be with you” should be your whip-smart motto.
This looks awesome…. mmmm homemade caramels, from the microwave. My suggestion for the sticky cutting is butter the knife/cutter and keep buttering it as you go.
I’m thinking cooking spray would work nicely on the pizza cutter?
I do believe this is my new favorite food blog. I just got done making these about 20 minutes ago, and before I found this blog (I found it, incidentally, when I googled “microwave caramels set overnight”). The caramel goo is setting in my glass dish now. My microwave is ancient and I don’t know the wattage, so I used the cold water test and had to nuke it for about 13 minutes, but I’m not positive I did the test right. I like the idea of using a pizza cutter and like Chrissy, I was also thinking oiling the cutter might work.
I’m hoping to make them into turtles, but I might have a Robyn-fied disaster. We’ll see how this all shakes down. Thanks for the laughs, ladies.
Welcome, Prudence! I hope your caramels came out better than mine did. 🙂