Homemade Caramels

So a while ago I made some cookies using coconut oil. While I am not on paleo or vegan or anything, coconut oil has its purpose, and they came out great. This time I decided to be more adventurous, and went for caramels. Well, the instructions I had told me to pour a 1/6 of my fats and dairy in at a time and stir with my candy thermometer. I did this, and it steamed and burned my hand. I even dropped my thermometer, which could have sucked if it broke. I just got it, and I do not have a back up. What it should have had me do is turn off the heat once I reached the level of caramelization I wanted from the sugar, and just slowly pour the whole thing in while mixing it. Lesson 1 learned. I barely dropped the heat that much because I left it going, and I freaked when I hit 240F so quickly and put it in the mold. It set, but not well enough. It could be cut but only after waiting a day and then sticking it in the fridge for 30 minutes. It said to go to 245 for a harder caramel, which I wanted to do, but I paniced when my temp did not drop enough and it hit 240 in a minute. It turns out there are sugar charts, and they say its not caramel until 250. Lesson 2 learned. I refired the pot today and took it off at 250. Minutes later I realized I could have melted chocolate and wrapped them all in that. I will keep this in mind should they turn out soft again, or just do this every time regardless. It sounds like it would make things a lot less messy.

 

Final Recipe

  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup (120 ml) heavy cream or
  • 3 tablespoons water
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) light corn syrup
  • 1 cup (200 grams) sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon course or flaked sea salt
  • Lightly oil a 9 x 5 inch loaf pan then measure and cut a piece of wax paper that will fit inside the pan and come up the sides by at least 1 inch. Next, rub butter all over the inside of the paper where the caramel will sit. Enough to make it all greasy, but not caked on.
  • In a separate pan heat the oil and cream until liquefied and turn off the heat.
  • In a small saucepan combine the water and corn syrup. Then, add the sugar, but try your best not to splatter the sugar up the sides of the pan. Now, use a spoon to gently stir the sugar into the water and corn syrup, just moistening the sugar.
  • Heat over medium heat until the sugar has come to a boil. Then, cover with a lid for 1 minute. This adds steam/moisture to the pan, so any sugar that may have stuck to the sides of the pan melts and falls back into the boiling sugar.
  • Remove lid then attach a candy thermometer to the side of the saucepan. Then, slowly cook sugar for 5 to 10 minutes, (you don’t really want to rush this, as the temp can get away from you) until the sugar reaches a temperature of 320 degrees F. At this temperature, the sugar will take on a light amber color around the edges of the pan.
  • The moment the sugar reaches 320 degrees F (160 degrees C), turn off the heat, and slowly pour the coconut oil and cream mixture then stir, using the base of the candy thermometer to incorporate it.
  • By adding the cream and coconut oil, the temperature will drop. Now, continue cooking for another 5 to 10 minutes, until the caramel reaches a temperature of 250 degrees F. Again, cook slowly so that it takes at least 5-10 minutes to reach your temp.
  • The moment the caramel reaches 250F, pour into the prepared loaf pan. Cool 20 to 30 minutes then scatter the salt over the caramel. Then, let the caramel cool 3 1/2 hours.
  • Unmold the caramel. If the caramel is too soft to work with, place into the refrigerator 30 to 45 minutes to firm up. Then, use a large sharp knife to cut into your desired shape.

 

 

Angsty Teen Design

I am done with my old theme and moving to a default one. Why? Nobody reads this shit, and I not who I was when I took this design on. For posterity, here is the old site design, and it is done.

Capture

A lot has gone on. A trip to SF, a hellish cab ride from the airport that needs its own post because that night stuck with me for a whole weekend, and various other bullshit. Where am I going with this? Nowhere. Its just time to clean the slate.

Oh, and I missed Flava D coming to the states because of the flu. So pissed about that.

I leave you with this track from PVC, who gained a lot of fame in the garage scene for this discordant yet sick composition.

Fantasy Football 2014

In the league that I run, I managed to get first last year. I had a heck of a season with some crazy high scoring games. This season I managed to go 12-1, get the first round bye, and then lose in the most crushing defeat of the season. Back to back wins would have given me some excellent bragging rights. Oh well. I also participated in a league run by seriouscigars.com. These guys have a lot of cigars that are hard to come by, and good pricing on singles. Not a lot of sales, but if you know what you want, they have it and its priced right. Anyway, now that I plugged them, I won first in their My Father sponsored league. I originally was not aware that it was a sponsored thing. Something may come out of pocket for the shop, but the manufacturers seems to be the ones giving out the prizes, which hasn’t been too efficient. Turns out they don’t like to answer e-mails much during the holidays. Anyway, having one league wind up free to play, and the other being free to enter with some cigars on the way isnt a bad deal either. If only the Steelers didn’t go out. Bell would have been nice to have in that playoff game.

Music Is So Wonderful

The Night Bass Tour in NYC was awesome. I wish I stayed for more of it, but by the time there was ample room, it was late. Too late for an old man like me. Seriously, from 11:45 to 1:15 it was a ton of people that hated wherever they currently happened to be. Nobody could occupy a single spot for more than 5 minutes. Dancing was out of the question when someone had to shove by you every few seconds. It reminded me of the late 90s. The music was on point. Hannah Wants was better than I anticipated. After her set I tried to grab a drink. Some lovely young lady shoved her way around me, and made it a point to let the world know she had to be served before me. The best part was when my wife approached her and she pulled her in from of me, as well, and went on about what a dick I was for just being there, that she would not fuck me, etc, etc. That was when the wife told her that I was her husband. Hilarity ensued. Kind of. The situation was amusing, but the quality of people at this place was pretty shit. I am not in tune with the kids these days, but I thought this would be out of the mainstream enough for the attendees to be cool. Some were, dont get me wrong. There were friendly people I ran into several times, but there were so many out to just be shit heads.It goes without saying that AC Slater made me forget about all that crap though.

That night aside, I have been following Flava D for well over a year now, and she will have a release on Party Like Us Records. Pretty excited about this. I hope to catch her out here in the US in the future. I believe she has been to NYC before, but I was not aware.

The Cake Is Not a Lie

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Yes, that is a cake. A real cake. It was a duel birthday celebration between Jen and myself, and one heck of a cake. One of the coolest things I have ever seen. Photo credit goes to Lou, who does this professionally. Look him up. He also had a hand in supplying the cake.

So many great things going on right now. License is back in 2 months as of now. I celebrated a great birthday, as seen above, and I hate birthdays. I am finishing up my AS degree in information systems this year. I made the first beer that I feel must be entered in a competition, a lemon pepper saison. Tomorrow is the Night Bass tour in NYC hosted by Trouble & Bass. It will be sick to see AC Slater above all, and listen to something outside of Jungle/DnB for a bit. Things are looking up in many ways. The one damn thing I need though, is a raise. Soon to be 8 years without one. With everything else going on, it will be easier to go somewhere that skills and dedication are appreciated, and there is this small carrot they have been dangling over my head in the form of a raise. I would love to keep working from home and doing what I do while actually making enough to afford some getaways on my much needed time off.

In a week or two I need to update this site. Minimal design is the way to go these days. White site, creative and yet to be figured out banner.