Accuracy is paramount in cooking, and two of the best examples of this are deep frying and making caramel. It takes only a few extra degrees to turn a glossy caramel sauce into a tooth-cracking mouth trap. And if your frying oil is too hot or not hot enough, you could end up with burnt or greasy food.
But there’s some technique involved with temping caramel and oil. In both cases, there are hot spots to consider. And if you’re taking the temperature of a relatively small volume of liquid, as is often the case with caramel, your thermometer’s probe might register the temperature of the sides or bottom of the saucepan instead of the caramel.