Carmel can be difficult to make as if the temperature gets too high then the caramel will burn and be unusable, if the temperature is too low then the caramel will be too pale and have no flavour. Use a digital thermometer to get an accurate temperature reading. Be careful when making this, as it is very easy to burn yourself. Try to use pans that do not have a non-stick lining as this can increase the chance of the caramel crystallising.
There are two methods of making caramel, the dry method and the wet method. The dry method involves just placing the sugar in a pan and heating until caramelisation. This method is quicker to do but has a higher chance of crystallisation. The wet method involves dissolving the sugar in water before heating on the hob. This method is slower but is less likely to crystallise.
When making caramel always check the colour of the sugar is it is heating, the lighter the caramel the sweeter it will be but the caramel will lack flavour however, when the caramel starts to get darker the caramel will become more bitter and start to develop more flavour.
400g Caster Sugar
1. Place the sugar in a pan, add enough water to dissolve the sugar. By dissolving the sugar in water, it will help to reduce the chance of crystallisation.
2. Heat on the hob; it will take around 6 minutes for the sugar to start turning colour around the edges.
3. Swirl the sugar (do not mix, as this will crystallize the sugar) to evenly distribute the heat. Once the caramel reaches 170C/340F take off the heat and quench in a large bowl of water. By doing this it will stop the cooking process and preventing the caramel from burning.
Sweet and salty works so well together that is what makes salted caramel so good. This caramel can be used as a sauce or even as a filling in brownies. This recipe was found on Edd Kimbers website http://www.theboywhobakes.co.uk/.
150g Granulated Sugar
125ml Double Cream
10g Salted Butter
Pinch of Sea Salt
1. Put the sugar in a pan and heat on the hob.
2. Heat the sugar until it starts to turn brown on sides. Then start to swirl the sugar. Keep the sugar on the heat until the caramel reaches a nice golden brown colour.
3. At this stage quickly remove the pan from the heat and then add half of the cream and mix together. By adding half this will prevent the mixture from over flowing.
4. The add the other half of the cream and add a pinch of salt to the caramel.
5. Next add the butter and mix until fully incorporated. Leave the caramel to cool.