This Milk Caramels recipe or Krówki recipe is a simple yet delicious way to enjoy this classic Polish candy. Made with just a handful of ingredients including fresh milk, sugar, butter, and vanilla extract, these bite-sized caramels are smooth, creamy, and full of flavor. The recipe is easy to follow and requires no special equipment, making it perfect for novice candy makers or those who want to try making krówki at home for the first time.
The candies are usually individually wrapped and have a smooth, creamy texture that melts in your mouth. They are a popular treat in Poland and are often given as gifts or served as a dessert after a meal.
In recent years, Polish milk caramels have gained popularity outside of Poland and can now be found in specialty food stores and online retailers around the world.
- 2/3 cup (150 grams) of unsalted butter
- 3/4 cup (200 ml) of heavy cream
- 1 cup (200g) of granulated sugar
- 1 tsp. vanilla extract
How to make Milk Caramels
- Grease a piece of parchment paper and use it to line an 8×8 inch square pan or a similar container.
- In a medium saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter and sugar together, stirring frequently until they are fully dissolved.
- Add the cream and vanilla extract to the mixture and simmer over medium heat for approximately 30 minutes, stirring frequently, until the mixture has thickened to the consistency of molasses. The batch will have reduced to about 60% of its original mass. Keep stirring frequently to prevent sticking.
- Transfer the mixture to a glass bowl and stir until it has cooled down slightly. This will also help to reduce any foam that has built up during the cooking process. You’ll notice that the mixture will start to harden slightly along the sides of the bowl.
- Pour the mixture into the parchment-lined dish and allow it to cool completely, ideally overnight in a cool place. Once fully cooled, cut the krówki into bite-sized pieces and wrap them individually for storage or gifting. Enjoy!
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How long it will take to make Milk Caramels
Overall, the time to make Milk Caramels can take between 1.5 to 2 hours to make krówki from start to finish, although this time can vary depending on your individual circumstances.
It can vary depending on factors such as your experience in making candy, the equipment you have available, and the temperature and humidity in your kitchen. However, here is a rough estimate of the time involved:
- Preparation time: 5-10 minutes
- Cooking time: 30-40 minutes
- Cooling time: 30-60 minutes
- Cutting and wrapping time: 15-20 minutes
The Creamy and Delicious Story of Krówki
The name “krówki” is derived from the Polish word “krówka”, which is the diminutive form of the word “krowa”, meaning “cow” in English. The candies are called this because they were originally made with fresh milk from cows, which was a common ingredient in traditional Polish confectionery.
Milk has been a staple ingredient in Polish cuisine for centuries, and the country has a rich history of dairy farming. Traditional Polish sweets, such as krówki, often feature milk as a main ingredient. The use of fresh milk in the production of krówki gives the candies a rich, creamy flavor and a soft, chewy texture.
Krówki were first created in the early 1900s by a confectionery company called “Wawel”, which was founded in Kraków, Poland. The company used fresh milk from local cows to make their candies, and the name “krówki” quickly became associated with this particular type of sweet.
Today, many companies in Poland still make krówki using traditional methods and fresh milk from cows. The candies are beloved by Poles of all ages and are considered a national delicacy. In addition to their delicious taste, krówki are also appreciated for their cultural significance and the role they play in Polish culinary heritage.
The Rich History and Enduring Popularity of Krówki in Poland
Krówki have a rich history in Poland and have been a beloved candy in the country for over a century. They were first created in the early 1900s by a confectionery company called “Wawel”, which is still in operation today and remains one of the most famous candy makers in Poland.
The founder of Wawel, Adam Piasecki, was a pharmacist who started the company in 1898 in Kraków, Poland. Initially, Wawel produced various types of candy and chocolate, but it wasn’t until the early 1900s that they introduced krówki to the market.
The original recipe for krówki included just a few simple ingredients: sugar, milk, and butter. The candies were made by cooking the ingredients together until they formed a thick, caramel-like mixture, which was then poured into molds and allowed to cool.
Krówki quickly became popular in Poland and were soon being sold throughout the country. In the years that followed, Wawel continued to innovate and expand their product line, introducing new flavors of krówki and other types of candy.
Today, Wawel is still one of the most well-known candy makers in Poland, and krówki remains one of their most popular products. The company has expanded its product line to include a wide range of candies, chocolates, and other sweets, but krówki remains a cherished part of their heritage and continues to be enjoyed by Poles of all ages.
Exploring the Sweet World of Krówki
While traditional vanilla-flavored krówki are still the most popular, there are many other varieties available to suit a wide range of tastes. Here are a few examples of some of the different types of krówki that can be found in Poland:
- Chocolate krówki: These are made with a mixture of milk and dark chocolate, giving them a rich, chocolatey flavor. Some varieties may also include nuts or other ingredients for added texture.
- Coffee krówki: These are made with a blend of coffee and milk, giving them a strong, bitter-sweet flavor. They are popular among coffee lovers and are often enjoyed as an after-dinner treat.
- Fruit-flavored krówki: These are made with fruit juice or extracts, giving them a fruity, tangy flavor. Some popular flavors include strawberry, raspberry, and lemon.
- Mint krówki: These are made with a mixture of milk and peppermint extract, giving them a refreshing, minty flavor. They are often enjoyed as a palate cleanser after a meal.
- Caramel krówki: These are made with a combination of caramelized sugar and milk, giving them a deep, caramel flavor. They are similar to traditional krówki but have a more intense, caramel flavor.
These are just a few examples of the many different types of krówki that can be found in Poland. Some candy makers also experiment with other flavors, such as almond, hazelnut, or coconut, to create unique and delicious variations of this classic Polish candy.
Gift-giving occasions and other ways krówki are enjoyed in Poland.
Krówki are not only a popular candy to eat in Poland but also frequently given as gifts, particularly during holidays and special occasions. Here are a few examples of when krówki might be given as a gift:
- Easter: In Poland, Easter is a major holiday, and it is customary to exchange gifts with friends and family. Krówki are a popular Easter gift, often given in festive packaging and colors.
- Christmas: Like Easter, Christmas is also a major holiday in Poland, and it is common to exchange gifts with loved ones. Krówki are often included in Christmas gift baskets or given as small gifts to friends and colleagues.
- Weddings: Krówki are sometimes included in wedding favors or given as a small gift to guests as a token of appreciation.
- Tourist souvenirs: Krówki are also a popular souvenir for tourists visiting Poland. They are often packaged in decorative boxes or tins featuring traditional Polish designs or landmarks.
In addition to being given as gifts, krówki are also enjoyed as a snack or dessert in Poland. They are commonly served with coffee or tea and are a staple in many Polish households. The candy’s popularity has even led to the creation of various krówki-themed products, such as krówki ice cream, krówki-flavored vodka, and krówki-inspired desserts and pastries.