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Bull's Eyes/Carmel Creams

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A reader sent me an almost breathless e-mail yesterday:

"Elizabeth, You have to check this out! Someone created homemade, gluten-free bull's eye candies. They are the caramel candy with the cream center. I am so excited."

Of course, the promise of candy sent clicking for the link she had sent! And, boy, was I greeted with a wonderful surprise!

Take a look at this:

And this:

Oh and if your mouth isn't watering yet, take a look at this:

Don't they look amazing? I HAD to share this recipe with you. I contacted the creator of these yummy-looking gluten-free bull's eyes and asked him a few questions.

Andrew, who we can thank for this recipe, graciously agreed to answer my questions and let me share his pictures! Thanks Andrew.

(I have to note that Andrew said, "I suppose I should thank my mother for posting a link to my recipe on the Celiac forum she frequents. I don't think anyone actually reads my blog, I just started posting it so I could augment a few of the recipes I posted to www.recipezaar.com with extra pictures and commentary." Thanks Andrew's mom for sharing!)

How long have you been gluten-free?

I have been gluten-free for 2 years now. I was a freshman in college at age 19 when I started and am now 21.

Why create a recipe for Bull's Eyes candy?

I created the recipe for Bull's Eyes because Goetze's cream filled caramels were a favorite of both my mother and I before we went gluten-free. For some reason however, they contain wheat flour and we haven't had any for several years. While there are numerous other commercial caramels out there that are gluten-free, I am not aware of any with the cream center, hence this recipe.

How many attempts did it take you until the recipe was "just right"?

It was just 1 attempt, but there are one or two changes I will make if I make another batch. As I mentioned in my blog post, my caramels are creamier than the authentic Bull's Eyes, perhaps maybe too creamy. I'll probably let the mixture reach a higher temperature to make the candies more firm. As is, if you unwrapped one of the candies and sat it on a flat surface, it will eventually spread out and turn into a puddle of caramel.

In your post, you mentioned your homemade candies were "creamier" than the original. Any other surprises?

Hah, the biggest surprise was how many caramels I ended up with! Mine are a bit bigger than Goetze's and I don't even know what I'm going to do with them. I've been eating a couple a day but I'm going to have to take some with me to class and pass them out to friends. (Note from Elizabeth: Don't you wish you went to school with Andrew?)

What do you want to tackle next?

Next, hmmmmm. We are a big eater of pretzels in my family. It took my mother and I forever before we came across a satisfactory gluten-free pretzel. Most of the existing commercial gluten-free pretzels are made "healthy" also and as such, do not have enough salt. We both feel that the sole purpose of the pretzel is to be a vessel for the salt. A pretzel without enough salt isn't even worth eating! I miss eating the big crunchy sourdough pretzels with the copious amounts of salt in the center. Maybe that's my next project...

Here is the link to the recipe. Enjoy it! I can't wait to give it a try!

PS These candies are also known as "Caramel Creams."


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