Ginger-peanut caramels

4 TB salted butter
Extra butter to grease ceramic dish
3 ounces high quality bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 cup half & half
½ cup light corn syrup
½ cup molasses
1 cup white sugar
1 ts high quality vanilla extract
Giant pinch of sea salt
½ cup of honey roasted peanuts, rough chop
¼ - ½ cup candied ginger, diced fine

Wax paper squares for wrapping caramels
Extra butter for greasing up your slicing knife

Cook notes:
Remember this is hot sugar, never touch the hot sugar, never be tempted to taste test, and always use oven mits. The next time I make this I will use real ginger root. The ginger in the candied ginger was not that strong. And I think real ginger will add a nice, strong, deep flavor. I used honey roasted peanuts for that extra flavor and texture. Of course you can use regular peanuts if you like or even pecans.
I found it was a lot easier to slice the caramels when the mixture was almost cooled and set. It’s best to wrap these in wax paper. If you don’t wrap them, they will stick to each other when you store/stack them away. Make sure to work fast when you are at the last stage of adding in the add in’s. The caramel sets up fast and needs to be poured as soon as possible. So it’s handy to have your add in’s right at the ready.

Butter an 8-by-8-inch or 8 x 9 baking dish. Get out a candy thermometer and clip onto pot. Get your minced ginger and chopped peanuts ready, set aside.
In a large heavy duty pot (with high sides preferably) combine the butter, chocolate, milk, molasses, sugar, and salt. Place over a medium heat and stir constantly and CONSTANTLY scraping the bottom of pan. (You will be doing this for a while). Let it boil and cook until the temperature reaches around 247 -249 (soft ball stage). Once it hits this temperature remove from heat
And add in the vanilla extract (it will make a lot of noise and sizzle).
Just add in and stand back then stir in. Next, working fast add in your ginger and peanuts, and give it a good stir.
Once mixed, pour the hot mixture into your prepared buttered baking dish.

In about an hour or 45 minutes you should be able to handle caramel. Gently lift if out of baking dish and transfer to a wooden board or plastic cutting board.
Using a sharp knife cut long strips about ¾ of an inch, then cut those strips into 1 or 2 inch pieces.) Wrap in wax paper.
Should make about 70 pieces; all dependant on how you cut them (what size).