Oh How I Love Those Smiles...Homemade Caramels

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  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar (white, granulated)
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup Karo syrup
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk (not evaporated mile)
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • salt flake for the op of the caramel (optional)
  1. Prepare your baking dish.  Grease a 9 by 13 baking dish with butter.  Do not use non-stick cooking spray for this or it will give your caramel a strange flavor.  Set it aside until the caramel is done cooking.
  2. In a non-stick pan, add the butter, sugar, brown sugar, Karo syrup, sweetened condensed milk and salt.
  3. Cook in a deep saucepan (I used a high sided frying pan and it worked fine) over medium heat, stirring until all the sugar is dissolved and the butter is melted.
  4. Stirring constantly, cook the caramel mixture until it comes up to 240 degrees on a candy thermometer. (Note: I cook it to the "firm ball" stage. I find the caramels are firmer, but not hard). If you don't have a candy thermometer, use the cold water method. (Put a couple of cups of cold water in a cereal bowl. Drop a tablespoon of caramel into the cold water.  Move the caramel mixture around with your fingertips.  If the caramel forms a "softball" it's ready.  If the caramel dissolves or runs through your fingers, keep cooking it.)
  5. Take the caramel off the heat immediately to stop the cooking and stir in vanilla.
  6. Pour the caramel into the greased, prepared, 9x13 baking dish.  Let the caramel cool before cuttings...about 3 hours.
  7. Sprinkle with salt flakes if desired...enjoy!