Sunday, June 28, 2009

Fleur De Sel Caramels

I've been on the caramel train lately. The Salt Caramel Molten Cake at Le Chalet des Iles started the locomotion. I then adapted it to a Salt Caramel Chocolate Molten Cake. Well, I came home from a very late night flight a few days ago and my son had made a caramel sauce while I was gone. He didn't mean for it to be a sauce. It didn't firm up, so we now had a creamy honey caramel sauce. Since he really wanted it to be soft and chewy caramel candy, I tried a different recipe. His recipe used honey and even though he got it to the required 248 degrees, my suspicion is that the honey somehow prevented it from hardening more. With the ingredients already on hand from his recipe, I thought I'd give it a try. I used a Fleur de Sel Caramel recipe from Epicurious.com that had very positive comments. I love to read what other people say about their attempts at a recipe, sometimes it saves a lot of trouble. I made a few changes as I went along. The caramel turned out to be the perfect chewy consistency with a rich and creamy texture. We now have all of the caramel we need to indulge in more molten cakes, ice cream toppings, and afternoon snacking. I think it's time to stop at the station and get off of that caramel train now!

Fleur de Sel Caramels
(adapted from epicurious.com)

1 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/2 teaspoon fleur de sel, plus more for sprinkling on top
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup light corn syrup
1/4 cup water


You will also need parchment paper and candy thermometer.

Line bottom and sides of a loaf pan with parchment paper, then lightly oil parchment.

Bring cream, vanilla, butter, and fleur de sel to a boil in a small saucepan, then remove from heat and set aside.

Add sugar, corn syrup, and water to a 3- to 4-quart heavy saucepan, stirring with a wooden spoon until sugar is dissolved. Boil, without stirring but gently swirling pan, until mixture is a light golden caramel. Watch so it doesn't burn or get too brown.

Carefully and very slowly stir in cream mixture (mixture will bubble up)* and simmer, stirring frequently, until caramel registers 248°F on thermometer, 10 to 15 minutes. Adjust heat if needed. Pour into baking pan and cool 2 hours.** Cut into 1-inch pieces and sprinkle each piece with a pinch (increase or decrease to taste) of fleur de sel. Then wrap each piece in a 4-inch square of wax paper, parchment or cellophane, twisting 2 ends to close.

*the mixture can bubble up violently while adding the cream mixture in, so take precautions.

**On humid days, the caramel may become sticky. If it does, refrigerate before cutting and wrapping.

Makes 36-1 inch pieces.

Written and photographed by Diane.

Fleur de Sel Caramel recipe (pdf)


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11 comments:

Lori (All That Splatters) said...

Diane, I just pulled this recipe from Epicurious.com a couple of days ago! I'm anxious to try it, as well. Your caramels look perfect!

Lee said...

Going by the store today to get these ingredients. Amazing looking caramels. Added this to stumbledupon, btw.

Amanda said...

These would make a wonderful gift! Beautiful.

HoneyB said...

These look so yummy. I am definitely going to make these in the near future!

La Table De Nana said...

Oh wow! Thanks for the recipe and photos..I am anxious to try these.Beautiful photos Diane!

Deborah said...

I bought some fleur de sel just to make caramels with, but I haven't yet. This is inspiring me!

once in a blue moon... said...

omg i am just coming to get caught up with you... but caramels are weakness, i am drooling on the first post and have tons more to look at!

i LOVE your blog, you always do the best of the best~

Ry @ Sotto Il Monte Vineyards said...

My favorite Fleur de Sel. Mmmmm these look so wonderful.
Cheers!
Ry

junko said...

I love love love carmel! I've always thought it was intimidating to make but maybe I'll give it a try. They look so good!

Anonymous said...

These look wonderful, but I'd love to know the recipe for the honey caramel sauce your son made as well.

2 Stews said...

Anonymous....this is the recipe my son used:

http://www.brooklynfarmhouse.com/2009/06/23/antique-recipe-honey-caramels/

His didn't really firm up, which left us with a delicious sauce. Not a bad thing ;-) Let me know how yours turns out.

Good luck....Diane