Caramel Temp for dipping Pretzels

TobyTDecember 14, 2011

My daughters want to make the dipped pretzel rods for their friends Christmas gifts. So what stage or temperature should we take the caramel to, so that we can dip the rods and have them dry (firm up)sufficiently so that we can re-dip in chocolate, but still be soft enough to eat without pulling out a filling? I've googled around, but not getting a definitive answer.

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publickman

I use the "firm ball" stage, or 244 degrees on the candy thermometer. Any cooler than that, and it will not be firm when cooled.

Here's the recipe I use:

Ingredients:
1 cup sugar
1 cup dark corn syrup (or 3/4 cup light corn syrup and 1/4 cup molasses)
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1 cup heavy cream, divided

Directions:
Dissolve 1 cup sugar, 1 cup dark corn syrup, 1/2 cup butter, and 1/2 cup cream in a large heavy saucepan, stirring until the mixture boils. [Note: you will need a very large pan because mixture will bubble up when it boils and increase three-fold in volume.]

Cook over moderate heat, stirring constantly, to the firm-ball stage, 244 degrees. Remove from heat and add very gradually the remaining half cup of cream.

*I use this recipe when making chocolate turtles, and it's very rich because it uses all cream and no milk. You can probably substitute half and half or all milk if you are putting it on pretzels. For me the salt on the pretzels would ruin it, as I prefer it with no salt at all - it has a sweeter, richer flavor when salt is absent. If you can find unsalted preztels, they would be preferable - to me at least. I have never made it with milk, and so I cannot say from experience how the substitution would work, but the recipe as it is will firm up enough to stay on a pretzel, but I would still refrigerate them. It does not get firm enough to cut the caramel into squares. The best way to keep the caramel in place would be to dip the chilled caramel pretzels in melted chocolate and then chill them again. I add 10-15% paraffin wax to the chocolate if it is going to be handled, but if you leave a portion of the stick uncovered, that would not be necessary.

Lars

    Bookmark   December 14, 2011 at 7:52PM
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publickman

I just noticed that I left out an important part of the recipe.

After adding the rest of the cream, you have to return it to the burner and cook it to 244 degrees, or firm ball stage. I take it off the stove at 244 degrees, and it sometimes continues to heat up to 246 degrees, but this is okay, but you don't want to go beyond that point.

Sorry for the error.

Lars

    Bookmark   December 14, 2011 at 7:59PM
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TobyT

Thanks Lars. Turtle consistency should be just what I need. I've never made them, but my DH has given me a box of Turtles every Christmas since our very first one. I've never had a dipped pretzel - I've never even seen the pretzel rods here until this year. My daughters want to make them for their friends, so I encourage them as much as I can. Thanks again for sharing your recipe.
Jane

    Bookmark   December 15, 2011 at 1:04AM
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