Liddabit Sweets, Brooklyn


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I’m crazy about salted caramels. This past Christmas I even got it into my head to make them as gifts. I got out my candy thermometer, and with that in hand, I confidently watched over my boiling pot of goodness (sugar, corn syrup and fresh vanilla bean), diligently checking the temperature until it reached 245 °. Temperature is important to candy-making, and I knew that even with my limited experience, but somewhere along the line I still screwed up.

After I’d let my caramel rest in a pan overnight and turned it out onto waxed paper to cut into bite-sized pieces, it oozed to the sides of the paper — and there was nothing I could do to contain it. This caramel was sad, not liquid caramel just right for serving over ice cream and not chewy caramel, for snacking. This caramel was just plain wrong. I’ll try again, eventually, but for now, I’m sticking to Liddabit Sweets’ salted caramels instead. These delicious treats are perfectly soft, perfectly chewy and perfectly sweet and savory.

The women behind Liddabit Sweets in Brooklyn are Liz Gutman and Jen King. They met while studying pastry at the French Culinary Institute, and in 2009, they launched Liddabit Sweets, where they hand make small-batch candies using fresh, local ingredients. The star ingredient in their caramels, for example, is cream from Ronnybrook Farm Dairy in upstate New York. Maldon salt, a flaky sea salt from England, also lends a more subtle flavor than regular table salt. They make several different varieties of caramel, including seasonal flavors (like preserved lemon & olive oil or chocolate black truffle), but the salted caramels are my favorite — and luckily those are always available.

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