Sugar High Friday: Stuck on You, the Round-Up

Now that my official hosting duties are wrapping up, I must say two things: One, thank you again to Jennifer at The Domestic Goddess, for creating this worldwide community event. It’s growing every time, which is a wonderful thing. And two, thank you to everyone who participated. It was genuinely exciting (and a little overwhelming) for me to visit so many new food blogs, and to hear the chime of my in-box over and over again, all day long. What a pleasure to see so many enthusiastic home cooks, and such variety of flavors!

I thought long and hard about how best to organize this report. Some of the previous ones were listed alphabetically, but since my own blog’s name starts with a W I know how disappointing it is to bring up the rear for an arbitrary reason like the alphabet. Then I considered breaking it down by types of recipes—flans and puddings, cookies, cakes, etc (with a special category for the extremely popular Millionaire’s Shortbread, which I’d never even heard of before now. Scroll down to see what I’ve been missing—it looks amazing!)—but that seemed likely to do little more than delay this post. Finally I thought I’d go geographically, since it really is impressive how global this event has become, but that just didn’t seem to make sense—it’s not like you’d be looking for a caramel recipe from Australia specifically, right?

In the end, I decided it was most fair to all of you who participated—at last count, there are forty of you!—to simply summarize the entries in the order in which they were received. Without further ado, I bring you Sugar High Friday: Stuck on You…

From Brownie Points, we have An Ode to Caramel in Four Movements, in which McAuliflower displays a remarkable level of virtuosity with dulce de leche, shortbread, and chocolate. My favorite: Chocolate Candy Caramel Tart.

Veronica over at Popote de Vero made something absolutely scrumptious-looking, and as much as I pretend I still remember how to speak French, well, I can’t quite be sure of what it is. I believe it’s some sort of molten chocolate cookie with a caramel center. Whatever it is, I was licking the screen!

Nicole at Baking Sheet treats us to Vanilla Caramel Popcorn, a lively twist on a favorite treat.

Another variation on Caramel Corn followed immediately, from Moira at Who Wants Seconds—this time with peanuts, although Moira doesn’t seem to have enjoyed the process (or the aftermath) quite as much as Nicole did.

Over at Little Fancies, Dreska has not only treated us to a lip-smacking recipe for Caramel Queen Slices, inspired by the shockingly popular Millionaire’s Shortbread, she’s also created an original artwork to illustrate it! Absolutely charming all around, and if I ever allow myself to bake again this is first on my list.

As always, Carolyn at 18thC Cuisine takes our contemporary themes and applies an old-world spin. Today she’s given us caramel sauce inspired by a 1653 edition of La Varenne’s The French Cook.

Layers of Love Chocolate Brownies. How good does that sound? Galinusa at The Skinny Epicurean discovered that layers of love can make a very fine brownie, indeed.

Sunrise Caramel Shortbread is the creation of Julie at A Finger in Every Pie. Another version of Millionaire’s Shortbread, it’s caramel, shortbread, chocolate, and candied blood oranges! Can you taste it? I can. Mmmmm.

In a slightly different vein is Tanvi of From the Pantry. She whipped up some Caramel Rice Pudding, based on an Indian recipe. It sounds wonderful, comforting and sweet. Love. Rice. Pudding.

Lex Culinaria wowed me with candy: She made Randy’s Pralines, a recipe she learned in New Orleans and toted all the way to Edmonton, Canada. Gorgeous!

Zarah Maria at Food & Thoughts puts yet a third twist on Millionaire’s Shortbread. This time around it’s called Squillionaire’s Shortbread, and it’s made with dulce de leche. I’m really having a hard time getting through this, since I want so badly to run into the kitchen and make some RIGHT NOW.

Chefdoc at A Perfect Pear has turned in one of the more professional-looking (not to mention delightfully complex) creations: Chocolate Caramel Walnut Tart Served with Coconut Tuile, Chocolate Caramel Sauce, Coconut Caramel Sauce, and Butter-Caramel Walnut Halves. Holy cow, that’s a lot of caramel! And all done at the last minute, no less. I am mightily impressed.

A brand-new blogger, Nupur at One Hot Stove, joins us for some Caramel Custard, a lovely, homey recipe she brought from her home in India when she moved to New York. Welcome to the world of food blogs, Nupur!

Another newbie, Steve at Zarzamora (who inspired my Food Blogging 101 post last week), tried something new with Red Plum Caramel Cake. Like a lot of my efforts, it didn’t quite work out as planned, but as Steve writes, “It is good for the soul to write about culinary disasters.”

Lots of first-timers this SHF. Another one, Katie at Sharp Cookie, created an Apple Bundt Cake with Caramel Topping for her husband’s birthday. It was a huge success. Happy Birthday, Katie’s husband!

Like me, Alice at My Adventures in the Breadbox ran into some difficulties with her caramel. She made Vanilla Banana Caramel Flans. It took her four tries to get it right—which is three tries more than I gave it! Good for you, Alice.

For her first SHF, PinkCocoa at PinkCocoa Tabetai created something truly unique (and tempting): Bailey Caramel Sauce over Steamed Sweet Potato Muffin. She loved each part separately, but together, not as much. Funny how that happens sometimes, isn’t it?

Celia at English Patis whipped up some absolutely scrumptious-looking Honey Caramel Nut Squares, studded with pecans, almonds, pistachios, hazelnuts, and dried cranberries—gorgeous photographs, too!

Over in Sweden, Anne at Anne’s Food went for a lighter approach, of sorts, using fresh fruit to make Oranges in Caramel-Almond sauce. It’s a recipe she grew up on, and it thrills my Weight-Watching heart—even though it is by no means a diet recipe. Certainly not.

Chevre Cheesecake Pots with Caramel and Fleur de Sel is the contribution of Sam at Becks and Posh, and it’s enough to make me, a cheese- (and cheesecake-) hater, drool. Seriously.

Not far from my home, over in Long Island City, Heather at What’s She Eating offers yet another variation with Gingerbread Caramel Corn—and according to Heather it’s actually Weight Watchers friendly, a definite score in my book.

Another SHF debut comes from Jenni at Pertelote, with Ginger and Caramelized Chilli Biscuits. They look fabulous, but no recipe! Jenni, if you wouldn’t mind sharing, the world wants to know how to make them.

Kelli at Lovescool (one of my favorite new food blogs since it’s all about dessert) whipped up Mini Caramel Cakes with brown sugar frosting and dulce de leche. Decadent, and gorgeous.

At A Sprinkle of Sequins (great name, don’t you think?) Nicola makes her SHF debut with Sticky Date Pudding with Caramel Sauce. Brava, Nicola!

Yet another SHF newbie, Karen at The Pilgrim’s Pots and Pans made Yemas, Filipino caramel custard candies. She’s also included a fascinating mini-history lesson—do stop by, and learn while you indulge.

Gwenda at The Adventures of the Tastebuds (check out that home page!) enters the SHF fray with an improvised Crepe, Custard, and Caramelized Apples—prepared in what sounds like a dorm room. I’m impressed, Gwenda.

In the UK, Keiko at Nordljus (another of my favorite new food blogs) made a stunningly beautiful Caramel Balsamic Ice-Cream and Brésilienne, a layered coffee-caramel mousse cake. Three words: Oh. My. God.

Heading north to Canada, Ana at Pumpkin Pie Bungalow made her mom’s recipe for Pudim Flan, a Portuguese flan. I love family recipes, and this one looks wonderful, comforting and sweet and delicious.

Zipping down to Melbourne, Niki at Esurientes offers us her Chocolate Caramel Slice. This treat was one of the sweet-tooth highlights of my trip to Australia a few years ago. I’m just tickled to have a recipe! (Is this another variation on Millionaire’s Shortbread?)

Robyn at Food Chronicles made a homemade version of Toffeefay candies—chocolate on the outside, nutella in the center, and caramel on top. Oh, boy, does that sound good.

For her first SHF, the self-coronated Queen of Tarts, Gillian, has baked The Queen of Caramel Apple Tarts using puff pastry shells. It looks marvelous!

Emily at Baking Beast made Coconut Caramel Candy Bars from the King Arthur Flour Cookie Book—an awful lot like the Samoas I attempted, only Emily was way, way happier with her results than I was with mine.

In Seattle, there’s a Bon Vivant named Viv. Viv went a little caramel-crazy and made first an incredible-looking Flan De Queso, and then followed it with two store-bought bits of deliciousness: Fleur de Caramel à la Fleur de Sel, and (drum roll please) Fran’s Dark Gray Salt Caramels, my favorite sweet of all time. Lucky Viv, she gets to live in Seattle, home of Fran’s. Although I suppose I’m lucky not to live there, since I’d eat them every single day and we all know how that would turn out…

Skipping across a small ocean to Hawaii, Reid at ‘Ono Kine Grindz shows us his Caramel Pound Cake, a recipe he improved slowly, over months, like all good things. Sounds wonderful, Reid!

Just when I was beginning to think she’d forgotten to attend her own party, Jennifer at The Domestic Goddess emailed with a yowsa of a creation: Chocolate, Caramelized Banana & Caramel Tarts. Now THAT’S what I’m talkin’ about!

In My Little Kitchen (OK, not my little kitchen, Cathy’s little kitchen) Cathy made two very different Caramel Puddings, with two very different results. I’ll give you a hint: it sounds like she’ll only make one of them a second time.

Clement at A La Cuisine chimed in with a marvelously sophisticated Roasted Pineapple with Passion Fruit Caramel and Caramel Dust. Psst…I can’t resist pointing out that while it is indeed sophisticated and decadent-looking, it’s also inadvertently diet-friendly. This one is going on my Must Try list, for sure.

Over at Truffle Mutt, Liz had a few missteps on the way to a Sticky Toffee Pudding that turned out wonderfully well, regardless. Just reading how she got there is worth a visit—who knew the perils of not reading a recipe thoroughly could be so funny?

There’s more than A Spoonful of Sugar in Angela’s Dulce de Leche Flan. She did the opposite of what I usually do—taking a low-fat recipe from Cooking Light and high-fattening it—and it looks like it really worked out well. Yum.

The very last email I received was from South Africa, Jeanne at Cook Sister. She celebrated winning a South African Blog Award by making a lip-smacking Apple Caramel Self-Saucing Pudding. Mazel tov on the win, Jeanne!

Just to make the round-up complete, here are links to my two posts, Samoas (Some-Moas) and Turtle Tart.

And now, if you’ll excuse me, I must phone my dentist. I feel a cavity coming on.