When planning for your upcoming St. Patrick’s Day parties, booze is what first usually comes to mind. There is just something so endearing when it comes to drinking green beer in March! Let the other guests keep their focus on the beer flowing, so you can take care of the dessert menu because you can’t just drink the WHOLE time, right?
As always, before a night of drinking, eating sweets, and most likely fried food (because greasy foods, like French fries always seem to make an appearance on drinking nights *shrug*), make sure to fill your body with foods high in protein, carbs and healthy fats to help dilute the alcohol (yes, that means the super-cool green beer, you will be enjoying throughout the night!).
It must be the luck of the Irish because these caramel candies are so delicious and fitting for the dessert table. With just one bite, they will have everyone breaking out in an Irish jig. When using LorAnn’s Irish Cream flavor you will instantly take in hints of cocoa and vanilla, and these firm caramels are packed with buttery, rich flavor.
In this recipe, you don’t have to go over the rainbow to make these spectacular treats, as they come together with simple ingredients you already have in your kitchen pantry. How’s that for a pot of gold?
These candies may remind you of popular baileys cocktails, like a White Russian or Mudslide (when topping with melted chocolate wafers). We all know in boozy treats, especially when using a flavored liquor like Bailey’s Irish Cream, the alcohol cooks out fast, making it lose its flavor. A benefit to our Super-Strength flavors is that these powerful extracts are 3-4 times stronger than typical alcohol extracts, so with this recipe, you don’t have to miss out on smooth, Irish Cream flavor. If a boozy take is what you do fancy, since it is a drinking holiday after all, add 1-2 tablespoons of whisky or bourbon. The Irish Cream flavor will be intense, and you should still get subtle hints of whisky from what does not burn out when creating these candies.
Choosing The Right Candy Thermometer
When it comes to candy thermometers there are a few options to choose from; and all are excellent candy making tools to use depending on your creation. For the Irish Crème Caramels, you can use our basic candy thermometer, but there are more high-tech options if breaking out into the candy making craze takes over you. We can’t blame you! It excites us!
Let’s break down the differences from our professional thermometers.
As the most economical choice, our Basic Candy thermometer is a good choice for the occasional user. It’s Ideal for making hard candy, and cooked candies like fudge, caramels and taffy.
For more serious candy makers or for someone who wants a higher-end product, the Premium Metal Candy thermometer features a sturdy metal housing, wide plastic handle and tight pan clip.
When only the best will do, the top-of-the line Digital Candy thermometer is our recommendation and the one we prefer in our test kitchen. This well-made thermometer is battery operated and can be programmed to sound an alert when desired temperature is reached – no waiting by the stove required!
Now that you have your thermometer, scroll on to get the recipe so you can have a Shamrockin’ Good Time at your party.
1 cup unsalted butter
2 cups sugar
1 cup light brown sugar, packed
1-½ cups light corn syrup
1-5 oz. can evaporated milk
1-¾ cups heavy cream
½ teaspoon sea salt
2 teaspoons LorAnn Irish Cream Super-Strength Flavor
White candy wafers, melted
Milk chocolate candy wafers, melted
½ cup finely crushed toffee bits
- Grease a 13”x9” baking dish with cooking spray. Line the pan with parchment paper that overhangs on all four sides of the pan.
- In a large pot, stir together butter, sugar, brown sugar, corn syrup, evaporated milk, cream and salt. Set pot over medium heat and stir until the butter is melted and ingredients are mixed. Wash down the sides of the pot with a wet pastry brush to remove any uncooked sugar crystals. Clip a candy thermometer to the side of the pot; do not allow tip to touch the bottom.
- Bring to mixture to a boil over medium heat and continue to cook, without stirring, until temperature reads 248°-250°F. Remove from heat and stir in the Irish Cream flavoring (and whiskey if using) with a clean metal or heat resistant spoon.
- Carefully pour mixture into the prepared dish and allow to cool 15 minutes, then refrigerate until firm, about 1-½ hours. Lift the caramel out of the pan and cut into rectangles or squares of desired size. If desired, drizzle with white and milk chocolate candy wafers and sprinkle with crushed toffee bits before chocolate sets. Wrap pieces individually in squares of twisting waxed paper.
*Makes about 3 pounds of candy. Candies will keep at room temperature for up to 1 week.