Pink peppercorns lend foods a different kind of heat, closer to chiles than black pepper. They have the same peppery bite, but it’s wrapped in a sweet fruity flavor reminiscent of a berry with an attitude. The peppercorns have a thin, fragile skin that can easily be rubbed off (a great lightly-flavored colorful garnish for fish or chicken).
Based on this description, it only makes sense that you’d pair them with something sweet, and when you enhance the whole thing with some French Celtic sea salt, you’ve got a perfectly balanced bite.
- Prepare a rectangular baking pan by lining it with aluminum foil and spraying with oil or greasing with butter. Set aside.
- Combine sugar, corn syrup, butter and 1 cup cream in a large, heavy-bottomed sauce pan over medium heat.
- Stir until sugar is dissolved, about 5 minutes, then wash down sides of the pan with a pastry brush dipped in warm water.
- Place a warmed candy thermometer in the pan and cook the mixture over medium heat, stirring constantly, until it comes to a boil.
- Wash down any crystals that form on the sides.
- Continue to cook until the mixture reaches 244F, or Firm Ball stage.
- Remove the pan from the heat and with a clean wooden spoon, gradually stir in the 2nd cup of cream.
- Return to the heat, bring back to Firm Ball stage, or at least 245F.
- Remove from the heat and pour into your prepared baking pan.
- Allow to cool for 10 minutes.
- Sprinkle crushed peppercorns and salt evenly over the surface.
- Allow to cool completely – you may want to put it in the fridge to speed this process.
- Once cool, remove the caramel from the pan by lifting the foil liner.
- Peel off the foil, and cut into pieces.
- Wrap with waxed paper.
Aren’t they pretty? And I can tell you, the flavor is just as nice. These are a great little holiday treat for your friends and family. The pink peppercorns add a unique dimension to the flavor profile, while also adding a touch of holiday color to an otherwise ordinary salted caramel. Try them and let me know what you think.