Monday, September 19, 2011

Caramel-Chocolate Clusters

I saw this and had to make it.  We all know my love affair with caramel so anything with it in it I'm going to make.  And this is the easiest, quickest cookie ever!  You can use whatever cereal you have on hand.  The recipe called for honey graham cereal and all I had on hand was some Rice Krispies - so that's what went in it.  All that's in this is caramel, chocolate chips and the cereal.  Melt down the caramel with some water and chocolate chips, stir in the cereal and drop tsps of mixture onto parchment paper and let set.  Done - that easy.

oh yeah.....chocolatey and caramely....
and delicious
I didn't have any caramels here (the Kraft kind is what they recommend), so I made my own.  Why not right?!  It's really easy - I will put the recipe for it up when I make chocolate cupcakes with caramel in the middle - oh yes I'm going there.....I just need to find some mini cupcake liners and lately no one has them.  Caramel is extremely easy to make, just a little dangerous because it gets really hot.  Like 360 degrees hot.  And being burned by sugar is not high on my list of things.  I get out my candy thermometer (Thanks to Linda and Bax for this one - this baby is getting lots of use this week) and get my caramel going.

I love my candy thermometer
Once it was at 360 degrees, time to add some cream and this part is scary.  It boils up and spits so if you make your own caramel, be careful.  But then it turns into this

hello friend
Let me tell you the smell of this in my house was amazing.  Ween commented on it, and caramel is not one of her favorite things.  If you do make your own instead of going the store bought route, you will want to double the amount of chocolate chips and cereal you use since the caramel amount is larger.  And let's face it, these things are that good you wont mind. 

Add the caramel to the cereal and chocolate chips and stir until it's well combined and coated then scoop out onto parchment paper and let set.  Easiest cookie ever. 

Caramel-Chocolate Clusters
makes about 28 cookies

12 vanilla caramels, unwrapped
1/2 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
2 tbsp water
2 cups honey graham cereal, slightly crushed

  1. Line a cookie sheet with waxed paper; set aside.  In a medium heavy saucepan combine caramels, chocolate pieces and water.  Heat and stir over low heat until caramels melt.  Remove saucepan from heat.  Stir in cereal. 
  2. Working quickly, drop the mixture from a teaspoon onto prepared cookie sheet.  Let stand until firm. 

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