As I guessed, the pumpkin-pie spiced caramels tasted kind of burnt. Scorched, or something. Fail. I'll try again, maybe this time adding the spices and vanilla at the last moment.
I have a cake order coming up in a few weeks, and the guy I'm talking to asked me if I write on cakes. The answer has always been "no," but I guess I've been practicing enough and I feel a bit more sure of myself. This order is for nine (NINE!) long words on a 10" cake. I'm so nervous. I think I'm going to trace it all out in chocolate on parchment paper over a template. I like doing that. That way, if I mess up, I don't have to worry about scraping it off the cake and messing it all up. And the chocolate slides right off the parchment if it's tempered correctly and frozen.