I was planning on making caramels (and fudge) to hand out as Christmas goodies. When I told my mom this, she called me a fool...literally! She doesn't remember doing so, but this was the first time she'd ever said anything like that to me, so I remember it vividly. Judging by her reaction to my plan, she knew something about caramel-making that I didn't (which isn't surprising...).
I decided to try it anyway, and took time to start the process this evening. Using the caramel recipe I found online, I started mixing and stirring and melting and boiling. Everything was going well UNTIL the candy thermometer was reaching the specified 250-degree mark, but the caramel mixture was about to boil over! OH NO!!! My solution was to call 248-degrees good and take the pot off the heat. I figured everything would be ok, put the sauce in the pan, and let the caramels cool to room temperature. Once they'd cooled off, they were still pretty runny, so I put them in the fridge and went on with my evening...
...after 3 hours in the fridge, I just checked on them, and discovered they are not cuttable caramels, but spoonable caramel goo. Woops. I guess I'll just be handing out fudge this year...and calling grandma for wisdom and tips for next year. For now, I'd like to apologize to degrees #249 and #250 - next time you will definitely be invited to the caramel-making party...and I'll use a bigger pot. : )
PLEASE: If you or someone you know would like some delicious caramel sauce for your ice cream or other dessert (or to eat plain...), let me know!!! I'd love to spread (no pun intended) some holiday cheer with my failed attempt at this yummy treat. : )