One of the things I love about recipe testing is that I never know where a testing session may lead. Case in point, today I was playing with coconut sugar caramel halos for the plated cakes chapter of my Gluten Free Cakes cookbook when I made a little "mistake" (another cool thing about testing is that "mistakes" often lead to the very best discoveries!). A couple of quick adjustments later I had the most sublime caramels I've ever tasted. Seriously. Deeply caramelized, subtly salted, rich and creamy, and decadent as all get-out. Best part? They are vegan. And low glycemic. You can thank me later.
Vegan Low Glycemic Caramels
Makes about 1 dozen small caramels, or enough for a personal stash. Can be sized up if you're willing to share!
1/2 cup organic coconut palm sugar (I use Wholesome Sweeteners or Navitas Naturals)
juice of 1 lemon
3 tablespoons canned coconut cream (chill your can overnight and use only the thick portion)
pinch sea salt
Combine all of the ingredients in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat. Stir to moisten the sugar. Bring to a full roiling boil and continue boiling for 3 minutes. Immediately remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool for two minutes then pour onto a parchment lined sheet pan. Cool for 15 minutes or until the caramel has started to set up. It should still be warm, but not too hot to handle. Peel the caramel away from the parchment paper and roll it onto itself to form a "snake" shape. Pinch or cut off bite sized pieces and roll them between your palms to form a marble sized caramel. Dip the tops into coarse sea salt or cacao nibs, if desired. Set aside to cool on the parchment. Once cooled you can wrap the individual caramels in parchment paper and keep in an airtight container (or your desk drawer!) Enjoy!
Coconut palm sugar is a nutritive, low-glycemic sweetener made from the dried sap of the coconut palm tree. It's completely natural and unrefined and retains it's vitamin and mineral content.