Tag Archives: caramel

Caramel Salted Nuts

Did I get you at Caramel? Salt? or the Nuts? I am going to apologize up front for sharing this with all of you, they are sinfully delightful! If you choose to make them; you will not be disappointed. I seem to have a problem with taking something somewhat good for you; the nuts; and adding a little more love; the salt and the caramel to bring it another level.
IMG_5364I have made this 3 times in the last couple of weeks. While that may sound like we have gone overboard on eating caramel salted nuts; we only got to eat 2 of the batches. I am not sure if I ever mentioned my crazy dog. I call him my ungrateful rescue; he has a severe case of separation anxiety and he only does this out of spite; he really has NO idea how good he has it. I am fairly certain that most would have given him up with all his shenanigans. Destroying shoes, clothes, stairs, doors to name a few. He has also been known to counter surf on occasion;  yep he found the sealed container of nuts on the counter, took them into the den and ate ALL of them. Thankfully there were no adverse effects to his digestive system. I wonder if he even enjoyed them?
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I do need to share that he does have some good quality’s as well; you will never find a more cuddly animal. He is most happy when sitting near or better ON you. And if we could all be so lucky that someone; anyone be SO excited when you walk into a door.
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If you have never made caramel before; it really isn’t that hard. There are a couple of things to keep in mind. Firstly it is VERY hot so don’t get any on you. Secondly stir it once and then leave it alone. You can swirl the pan but let the heat do the work and you will be rewarded in kind.

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Nuts
1 cup of almonds
1 cup of pecans
1 cup of cashews
1 cup of walnuts

On a sheet pan place in a 350’F oven for about 10-15 minutes. Just enough to barely brown them. Let them cool.
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Caramel
¼ cup water
1 ½ cup sugar
2 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoon kosher salt

In a sauce pan place the sugar and water stir to combine and then let it be. You can swirl the pan a few times until it starts to brown. It will continue to brown so don’t take it too far. Remove it from the heat and add 2 teaspoons of vanilla.

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While the caramel is still hot add the nuts and salt into the saucepan. Working quickly spread the nut mixture onto the same sheet pan with either parchment or Silpat. Flatten out with a couple of forks the best you can. Once cooled and hardened break apart and enjoy!

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Recipe by Ina Garten  

Banana’s Foster Buckle

Firstly Happy Valentine’s Day -I hope everyone had or is having a nice day!

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So my vacation was amazing even though I had a sore throat for most of it and ended up coming home with strep throat; never had that before and it sucked! I would do it all again, minus the throat issue.

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Notice I kept my husbands favorite rum in the picture!

 

My job on the boat was galley cook; I think that is what it is called. I had 2 gas burners and an oven, a small sink and limited counter space. I was definitely glad I planned ahead of time. We rented a condo a few days in front of our sailing adventure and I had brought with me quite a bit of provisions. So I cooked up some breakfast sausage, Sweet Italian sausage; crumbled and in links, and a pound or so of bacon. I thought by doing this on land I would not have to stink up the boat. Well it ended up being just a plain ole good idea. We had limited water, limited propane and damn that kitchen was small. I never turned on the oven just so you know. We did have zucchini bread and pear bread but I brought them from my freezer from home.

We didn’t eat on board all the time but when we did have meals, I felt they were pretty darn good. We had spaghetti and sausage one night, I made a frittata for one of our breakfasts. We had a white wine and garlic penne pasta one night. Oh I forgot to mention we also had a BBQ charcoal grill off the back of the boat. While it sounds really cool, I knew it would be kind of a pain but we are here; it is there and we all wanted to grill the beef tenderloins I was making for dinner.

Let’s just say I was right, it was a pain lighting the BBQ; we did get it lit though and it was ready to go but I ended up cooking them in a fry pan on the stove; and if anyone is say diving near Marina Cay off of Scrubb Island; there is a grill rack on the ocean floor somewhere in the middle of all the mooring balls.

I must have missed cooking and baking or this ridiculously cold weather has sparked a fire under me. I have been doing nothing but cooking. Last weekend I made 2 different kinds of chili, I had meatballs and sauce on the stove top and make buffalo wings and 7 layer Mexican dip. mostly for the Superbowl; which wasn’t very super in my opinion.

This weekend I have 4 new recipes I want to make. Hopefully they taste as good as they sound. As I am typing this this morning I have a Banana’s Foster Buckle in the oven. It looked amazing and smells awesome, It should be done in a bit YUM!

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Cake

4 TBS unsalted butter at room temperature
1 cup sugar
1 large egg
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup milk
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt

Preheat oven to 350’F grease a 9×9 baking dish; line with parchment grease the paper – I only had waxed paper and was a pain but did the job. If you leave an over hang it help with removal of the bread.

In a large bowl or your mixer, add the butter and sugar combine. Add the egg, vanilla and milk and stir till combined. Add flour, baking powder, and salt and mix until fully combined, it will be a thick batter.

Banana’s Foster

4 TBS unsalted butter
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
3-4 banana’s cut up
2 TBS dark rum

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In a large skillet over medium-high heat, add butter and sugar, melt and stir together. add the bananas and cook until caramelized.

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pour the rum and while being careful; catch a flame using one of those long handled lighter. Let the bananas and caramel flambe. Remove from the heat and let cool a bit.

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let there be fire

Pour the batter into the prepared baking dish, placed slightly cooled bananas foster on top and push them down a bit into the batter.

Bake for about 50 minutes; until golden brown. Serve with vanilla ice cream.

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It is delicious and tastes best with some vanilla Ice Cream – Who doesn’t love an excuse to eat ice cream in the morning. I read somewhere that Sylvester Stallone eats a pint of ice cream every morning, his logic is so he can burn it off all day. I’ll buy that!

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Recipe adapted by Cooking at Clark Towers from Carla Hall the Chew