Let me share a little family treasure with you – the recipe for our beloved homemade caramel pecan turtles. This sweet delight has been a cherished tradition in our family for generations, especially during the Christmas season. Picture this: crunchy pecans, rich caramel, and velvety chocolate coming together in a heavenly mix. It’s more than just a treat; it’s a piece of our family’s holiday magic that I’m thrilled to pass on.
Hey y’all, Tiffany here with a recipe for homemade caramel pecan turtles that is from my great-grandmother and is perfect for Christmas!
I grew up with this recipe as a family tradition. My mother got it from her mother-in-law (my grandmother, who gave me this pancake recipe and this canned apple pie filling recipe), who got it from her mother-in-law (my great-grandmother).
This recipe is from a group of Christmas dessert recipes that were passed down over the generations: divinity candy, fudge, caramels, and seven-layer bars. Altogether, these are a great group of Christmas treats to pass out for caroling and go perfectly with The World’s Creamiest, Most Delicious Hot Chocolate (in a Slow Cooker!)
Let me tell you about a holiday favorite
The Caramel Pecan Christmas Turtles are little bites of joy, and they aren’t just a treat; they’re a tradition at our Christmas table. Imagine crunchy pecans, gooey caramel, and chocolate bliss. But the real magic? It’s in making them with your loved ones, turning the kitchen into a laughter-filled holiday haven.
I’m here to guide you through the sweet journey of crafting these delights. So, grab your loved ones, let’s make some memories, and indulge in the sweetness of the season. Trust me; it’s not just about the treats; it’s about the joy of making and sharing them. Here’s to a cozy and delicious holiday season!
Caramel Pecan Christmas Turtles Recipe
Ingredients You’ll Need
Gathering the Essentials
To embark on this absolutely delicious journey, you’ll need the following ingredients:
- 1 cup (0.24 l) of pecan halves
- 1/2 cup of unsalted butter
- 1 cup (0.24 l) of granulated sugar
- 1 cup (0.24 l) of light corn syrup
- A pinch of salt
- 1 cup (0.24 l) of heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
- 12 ounces (0.45 kg) of semi-sweet chocolate
- A sprinkle of sea salt (for garnish)
Preparing the Caramel
First, make these caramels with pecans
Once the soft caramels have hardened, melt chocolate chips on the stove with a double boiler. If you’ve never done that before, here’s how it works:
- Fill a saucepan with 2 inches (5.08 centimeters) of water.
- Bring the water to a boil over medium heat. While you’re waiting to boil, put the chocolate chips in a second, smaller saucepan (or a heat-safe bowl)
- Take the saucepan off the burner. Set it down on a heat-safe surface to protect your counter.
- Place the upper saucepan (or bowl) on top of your lower saucepan. Make sure that the bottom of your saucepan or bowl does not touch the surface of the water. If it does, pour some of the water out. Make sure that the fit is tight, and that no steam can escape.
- Wait for the chocolate to melt most of the way, stirring occasionally with a rubber spatula.
When you’ve got that chocolate ready to roll, it’s time to dive into the magic. Go ahead, give those caramels a Chocolatey dip, and pop ’em on a baking sheet or whatever you have on hand – parchment paper, waxed paper, you name it. Now, here’s the pro tip: make sure everything, from the bowl to the spatula, is super dry. We want these treats to look as good as they taste, without any unexpected color changes. So, let’s keep it sweet and simple in the kitchen!
Note: make sure that the bowl with the chocolate and the spatula is completely dry, or the chocolate will turn white as it cools. The white isn’t harmful, it just doesn’t look as nice.
Assembling the Turtles
Imagine this delightful moment: you’ve got those pecan clusters, and now, here comes the magic – spooning that gooey, golden caramel all over, creating a layer that’s practically a luscious hug for each pecan. Now, patience is the key; let that caramel cool and set for about 30 minutes. It’s like waiting for a delicious secret to unfold.
While you’re at it, dive into the world of semi-sweet chocolate. Melt it down, and then, with the finesse of a dessert maestro, spoon it generously over each turtle, making sure every nook and cranny gets a Chocolatey coat. But here’s the grand finale – before that chocolate sets, sprinkle a hint of sea salt on top. It’s the sweet-savory harmony that’ll make your taste buds do a holiday dance!
Making Perfect Pecan Clusters
Let’s talk about making those awesome Caramel Pecan Christmas Turtles. You know, the ones that everyone loves during the holidays? Well, a key part of whipping up these delicious treats is getting the pecan clusters just right.
Grab some good pecan halves – the better the pecans, the better the turtles, right? Arrange them in groups of three. Not only does it look nice, but it also gives your turtles a sturdy base. It’s like building a little pecan team for your sweet creations.
Now, here’s the trick: the care you put into this step sets the vibe for the whole recipe. You want that satisfying crunch and nutty goodness to balance out the sweetness of the caramel and chocolate. It’s like creating a perfect harmony of textures and flavors.
So, pay a bit of attention here – it’s the secret sauce to making those Caramel Pecan Turtles truly unforgettable. Get those pecan clusters just right, and you’ll be on your way to a holiday treat that’ll have everyone coming back for more. Cheers to tasty turtles!
Crafting the Irresistible Caramel Layer
Exploring the heart of those Caramel Pecan Christmas Turtles reveals what makes them special – nailing that delicious caramel layer. It’s where basic ingredients transform into a smooth, rich sauce that steals the show.
Imagine butter, sugar, corn syrup, condensed milk, and a pinch of salt mingling in the pot. As they blend, your kitchen fills with a sweet aroma. Then, we add some heavy cream and a splash of vanilla – the game-changer, infusing our caramel with a pleasant flavor and a smooth texture.
At this point, the magic happens. The caramel topping those pecan clusters transforms into a golden, luscious layer. It’s simply delicious.
Crafting this caramel layer is like an art form, and trust me, the end result is worth it. With every bite, you’re enjoying a bit of Christmas magic. So, here’s to crafting that caramel layer and relishing those holiday moments with each chewy, caramel-filled bite. Cheers to the spirit of Christmas in every turtle!
Adding the Tempting Chocolate Coating
To achieve that dreamy chocolate shell on your holiday turtles, let’s add the final touch that elevates them to a whole new level.
Take some semi-sweet chocolate, melt it down, and delicately spread it over wax and parchment paper. Aim for that smooth, slightly glossy finish that gives your turtles the perfect snap when you sink your teeth in.
Now, generously spoon that melted milk chocolate over your caramel and pecan clusters, ensuring every turtle is fully immersed. It’s not just about appearances – this step adds a lavish touch and brings out the best in the milk chocolate, caramel, and pecan medley. It’s a party of textures and flavors!
Consider this the magic trick that transforms your homemade chocolate treats into a culinary masterpiece. They’ll not only look stunning but taste incredible too – a guaranteed way to make your holiday celebrations even sweeter.
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