Throughout the year (but especially during holiday season) there are often lots of guests dining at your establishment for special meals, be they celebrations for two or a larger parties. As a result, you might attract guests who have never tried your restaurant before, either because they’re enjoying a splurge meal or because they’re a guest at a party.
Giving a small treat for your guests to take home will surprise, delight and keep your restaurant in the customer’s mind after the meal. It’s also a nice final treat to present with the bill at a special wine dinner or other event. You can even offer a packaged treat to-go to guests hosting parties for an extra fee.
Gooey, delicious caramel is both inexpensive to produce and full of rich flavor, making it a perfect choice to whip up and give without a lot of extra expense or time spent. A little sugar, corn syrup, cream and butter is all you need to start. You can stick with these basics and go classic, or toss in some simple additions to up the flavor.
- Try adding fleur de sel and vanilla extract for a more sweet-salty effect.
- Want to take the flavors a little more gourmet? Try adding salty Japanese miso and topping the caramels with a few sesame seeds.
- Stir in some bittersweet chocolate for chocolate caramels. It’s simple, but makes these classic treats even better. You can also add flaky sea salt on top of these or even just a dusting of cocoa.
- To really get into the fall spirit, add apple cider, cinnamon, nutmeg and allspice for spiced apple caramels.
- Like brighter flavors? Add some lemon zest.
- Want to jump on the latest trends? Add a dash of cayenne pepper or even Sriracha for spicy caramels, or even top them with crumbled bacon.
Salted Caramel Popcorn Clusters
Our recipe for Salted Caramel Popcorn Clusters are a perfect caramel-themed choice for a holiday party. These crunchy clusters of goodness are bigger than a simple caramel, but they’re still inexpensive and easy to produce. Popcorn clusters have the nostalgia of popcorn balls during childhood, but the addition of almonds and pepitas makes them unique and grown up.
The Perfect Presentation
The problem with wrapping any type of caramel is the dreaded stick factor. A well-intended treat can quickly become a sticky mess if it's not packaged properly. Our First Mark® and Silver Source® wax paper is the perfect solution. It looks pristine and white, and with one side coated in wax it won’t stick to your gooey treats. For caramels, simply cut the paper into squares, wrap the caramels in the center and twist the ends, or tie them with twine or ribbon depending on the mood you want to evoke. For popcorn balls, just place the ball in the center of a more generously cut square, gather all the paper at one end and tie with a bow.