My first attempt at salted vanilla bean caramels!
I had never made caramels before let alone salted vanilla bean caramels. Don’t get me wrong it’s always my first choice when the chocolate box is passed my way but the thought of making them never really crossed my mind. Until I spotted these salted vanilla bean caramels on one of my favorite baking blogs Confections of a Foodie Bride and I just had to try them, at least once.
Now I’m hooked and can’t wait to try some different flavors and experiment a little bit. Salty and sweet has become a popular combination over the last few years and its definitely one of my favorites. There is just something so moorish about it and these little beauties definitely don’t fail to deliver that mix.
No real specialist equipment is needed, just a heavy bottomed pan, trust me this is essential the cleaning can be a real nightmare! And a candy thermometer, to me this is essential if the temperature is too low or too hot the results can be disastrous. They will either not set or taste burnt and be rock hard, not good either way.
- 240 millilitres double / heavy cream, (1 cup)
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter - cut up into small pieces
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 vanilla bean - split and scraped
- 1¼ teaspoon sea salt - plus more for sprinkling
- 295 grams granulated sugar, (1 and ½ cups)
- 60 millilitres water, (1/4 cup)
- 60 millilitres light corn syrup - golden syrup can be used as a substitute, (1/4 cup)
- Line the bottom and sides of an 8-inch tin with parchment paper. Then lightly grease the paper with a little butter
- Place the cream, butter, vanilla extract, vanilla seeds, vanilla pod and sea salt in a small saucepan. Gently bring to the boil, then remove from the heat and set aside.
- In a medium sized heavy bottom saucepan place the sugar, corn syrup and water and over a medium heat keep stirring until the sugar is dissolved. Then gently bring to the boil without stirring but gently swirling the pan, until the mixture is a light golden caramel in color.
- Remove the vanilla pod from the cream mixture and then carefully stir into the caramel mixture, be careful, as the mixture will bubble up. And simmer, stirring frequently until the caramel reaches the tempreture of 248˚F / 120˚C on your thermometer. Once it does immediately pour the mixture into your pre prepared tin, and allow to cool for 30 minutes.
- Then sprinkle another pinch or two of sea salt over the top of the cooling caramel. Then allow to completely cool.
- Once completely cooled tip out of the pan and remove the parchment paper and cut into 1 inch pieces. Wrap each piece in wax paper, foil or shop bought wrappers. I cut mine with a pizza cutter; I found this tool perfect for the job.
- These caramels will keep for a week in an airtight container and a little longer in the fridge.