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CC Made, the maker of the three delicious caramel popcorns featured in the May Treatsie box, was started by Cassandra Chen, a former currency trader. What started out as a fun hobby became a successful and unique business.
Treatsie: What was the inspiration for starting CC Made?
CC: I started CC Made because I love caramel. I could not find a caramel that made me happy. So many caramels and caramel corn do not have enough depth of flavor or the right texture. So I decided to make it myself and share it with my friends.
Treatsie: What makes CC Made caramel unique?
CC: The uniqueness of CC Made comes from our complete hands on process. Many other caramel makers automate as much of the process as they can, but this can leave the caramel under cooked and without depth of flavor.
Treatsie: Is the caramel-making process labor-intensive? What is involved?
CC: All of CC Made’s products are made by hand. It is extremely labor intensive. One of the reasons is because of the ingredients that we use. We use only butterfly popcorn because it has better flavor and crunch. Traditionally caramel corn and kettle corn use mushroom popcorn because it is sturdy and does not break easily when tossed or stirred in a machine. But mushroom popcorn does not have the desired flavor or crunch. Butterfly popcorn is fragile. So we have to handle the kernels carefully from when we pop it to when we pack it in the bags. All this has to be done by hand to ensure the least amount of breakage.
Our candies are probably the most labor intensive of our products. I like a caramel that is soft and smooth. Not chewy and gummy. This means that when we cut the candies to when we roll and package the candies, we need to handle them delicately. Too much handling or cooking just a couple of degrees higher will alter the texture and mouthfeel of the candies.
Treatsie: What’s next for CC Made? Any cool, new products we can expect to see?
CC: We are playing with ideas of brittles and honeycombs and lollies. Of course there are many more flavors to add to our current line of products.