Chocolate-Covered Caramels

Dear Delicious Chocolate-Covered Caramels,

I blame you for the decay-ridden second maxillary premolar currently rotting in the right side of my face. To be fair, I also blame these. And definitely these. But you most of all. Because you’re made of scrumptious sugar glue.

I’m no stranger to dental issues (thanks for the genes, Dad). More cavities than I could count when I was younger. One cavity-turned-infected-tooth that hurt so much it required an emergency root canal. Four impacted wisdom teeth that could only be removed by breaking away my jaw in several places. My face was so swollen I had to write on a chalkboard instead of speaking. I later upchucked into a giant bowl of green jello I’d been trying to eat when my tummy decided it did not like codeine. After two weeks I felt nothing but contempt for oatmeal and applesauce, and was consumed by thoughts of popcorn and well-toasted bagels.

Now that I’ve really whetted your appetite with my dental horrors, let’s talk caramel! I was seriously surprised by how easy it is to make this stuff. Put it all together, heat, watch, pour, wait, cut, done. Dipping them in chocolate makes this recipe a bit more time consuming, but the end results are über delicious. If you don’t want to bother with tempering chocolate, the caramels by themselves are still quite yummy.

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Tiny Pull-Apart Breads

Alright boys and girls, feast your eyes on the cutest little bread EVER. It reminds me of a doughy little sea creature! And as if being adorable wasn’t enough, these little guys had to go and be all sorts of crazy delicious too.

I stumbled upon a recipe for pull-apart bread many years ago, and was instantly obsessed. I’ve never been too keen on bread with other ingredients mixed right into the dough. But isolated layers of yumminess sandwiched between slices of bread that I can easily peel away from each other and stuff in my face? Sold! The recipe that I was following back then involved dividing the dough into somewhere between 8–12 pieces, shaping it into discs, and adding the filling between each one. Having so few layers didn’t exactly deliver the tastiness I was hoping for. It was more like eating a big chunk of bread with a hint of something yummy on it. And so, I abandoned the recipe after a few attempts and forgot about pull-apart bread. Then a couple months ago, I stumbled upon this recipe from Joy the Baker. As soon as I saw the first picture, my eyes lit up. How…HOW did she get all those layers?! I immediately scrolled down to discover one big sheet of rolled out dough, topped with filling and then sliced and stacked. Genius. Obsession reinstated.

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Homemade Rhubarb Pop Tarts

How exciting is it to realize you might actually be able to replicate a treat you imagined could only come from the store shelves? And with ingredients that will no doubt be much better for you! That is exactly why these beat out pie, mini tarts, and syrup for my first rhubarb recipe of the season.

I get pretty excited about rhubarb season. And not just because it’s so tasty. When rhubarb first starts appearing in stores and at farmers’ markets, I know that it finally, really, truly, is springtime. Time to get out the fans, open up the windows, and enjoy a delicious rhubarb cocktail on the screened-in porch!

Since I was so excited about rhubarb, I did consider going with a dessert that would better showcase the flavor of it. This is, after all, a dollop of jam surrounded by pastry and covered with icing. But it’s a pop tart! How could I resist?

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