I love apple cider season — it’s so versatile. You can drink it straight, or make rum and cider with a cinnamon stick, or make apple sangria with apple slices and apple brandy. You can use it in glazes and reductions. Or, with this recipe from smitten kitchen, you can make Apple Cider Caramels.
Apple Cider Caramels
- 4 cups apple cider
- 1 stick unsalted butter, cut into chunks
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/3 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 2 tsp. flaky sea salt
Lay 2 strips of parchment paper criss-crossed in an 8″ or 9″ square baking pan.
Combine the cinnamon and salt together. I highly recommend a flaky, quick-dissolving salt. You can use table salt, but use less. I used kosher salt, and got a lot of variation in the saltiness of the pieces — I wouldn’t recommend it.
Boil the cider in a saucepan until its reduced down to about a ½ cup of syrup. Remove from heat and add the butter, sugars and cream. Attach a candy thermometer to the pan, and return to a boil over medium-high heat and heat to 252ºF.
Remove from heat, add the cinnamon salt and stir thoroughly to combine, then pour into the parchment-lined baking dish.
Allow the caramel to cool until firm, then slice into bite-size pieces using an oiled knife. I found ½” x 1″ to be a good size. Wrap the caramels in wax paper.