This is a favorite at our Thanksgiving. I don't make them every year but pretty close to it. If you make candy often you get to know the look and feel of it which I should have paid attention to this time. You cook them to the firm-ball stage but my new candy thermometer had it lower than the temp on the recipe so my caramel came out harder than I would like. Still very delicious but at my age you have to watch all those crown,you paid so much for, don't come off.
1-16 ounce box of brown sugar (2 1/4 cups packed)
1-14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk (1 1/4 cups)
1 cup light corn syrup
3 Tablespoons instant coffee crystals or instant espresso crystals
1 teaspoon orange zest
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 teaspoon vanilla
In heavy 3-quart saucepan melt butter over low heat. Stir in brown sugar, sweetened condensed milk, corn syrup, coffee crystals, and orange zest. Mix until very well blended.
Cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until mixture boils. Clip on candy thermometer. Cook until it reaches 245 degrees or firm-ball stage. This should take about 15-20 minutes.
Remove from heat and stir in walnuts and vanilla(remove thermometer alsobefore stirring)
Quickly pour into butter pan any one around 8x8 or 9x9 or 10x7 will do well. If you put buttered foil as a liner it will come out eaasier. Cut when firm and cool into desired sizes, one inch is recommended. Wrap in wax paper cut to size.
NOTE: do not get distracted you must pay close attention the cooking of these . I dont' even answer the phone. Allow about one hour from start to finish and they make a great gift.