Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Wild Flowers Honey Crème Fraîche Caramels: Learning the trick of something sweet.

This is a special request from one of the reader that post on my facebook page, and I had a chance to make it because my sister wanted to try it too ^^, well she loves all thing caramel!!!

 I can't have enough of fresh caramel recipe, they are so delicious and versatile, eating it or turning it in to something else is easy too ^^. 
This time I made fresh caramel, again (or if you can read Japanese it called  生キャラメル (nama carameru or raw caramel). The base for this kind of candy can be many things, honey, syrup or sugar (different kinds of it), with a touch of cream and salt and well, everything that you can imagine and as long as the sugar can take it, haha.
The thing that you need to remember when working with sugar is the temperature is everything !!!! You can go from soft caramel to hard and brittle toffee in 2-5 minutes (in small recipe like this). And that what I faced when I follow this recipe, there is a small problem from the original recipe. The pan size in the original recipe is wrong -*-, so after my caramel reached the right temperature, I poured it into the pan and realized that the pan was too large (actually if I read and think carefully I can compare the amount of the ingredients and the pan size, but I didn't do it so it's my fault too). All I could do was waiting for my caramel to become firm a bit and put it back in the saucepan and heated until it became liquid again then pour it in to another smaller pan. So my caramel is firmer than other raw caramel, haha. Luckily the taste is not bad and my mom had a good time eating it ^^. And it a good learning experience for me, to keep in mind that the time and temperature is everything when working with sugar. 
 If you love playing with sugar (like me) I suggest you try this book : Sugar Baby: Confections, Candies, Cakes & Other Delicious Recipes for Cooking with Sugar by Gesine Bullock-Prado and Tina Rupp. It's a good book for candy making in non-professional style (I have many books on this subject, most of them are created for professional not home cook). You can see inside of the book on my facebook page, if you want to. Because you will understand the basic sugar stages and how to do it right. 6 parts of the book are about the sugar in different stages, and the last part is putting all of them together to get delicious desserts and sweet. I love the writing style but the fact is I didn't try any recipe yet. Just reading it and love it, that's all.
So, this recipe is another introduction to sugar cooking, and beside from learning you will get a delicious caramel to enjoy it too ^^.

Adaptation from : Melt In Your Mouth ‘Raw’ Crème Fraîche Caramels  by Just hungry
-I think the technique for checking the sugar that she gave is very good for the people who don't have candy thermometer, so I added it here too, they are in italic format. 
-If you're in the US, the setting temperature of your caramel will start from  115°C 

  Wild Flowers Honey Crème Fraîche Caramels
Makes 14x11 cm (or 10 cm square)
80g ................................. Granulated sugar
75g ................................. Wild flowers honey
35g ................................. Unsalted butter
100g ............................... Crème fraîche, heated to lukewarm
1/2 tsp............................ Maldon sea salt

Line the baking pan with parchment paper. 
Fill glass or measuring cup with ice water, you will need this for checking the consistency of the sugar if you don't have candy thermometer
Heat the crème fraîche by putting it in a microwavable cup and heat for 50seconds until it’s lukewarm. Set aside.
 Put the sugar and honey into the pan. Put the pan over medium heat, stir until it is all liquefied. 
 Lower the heat and keep stirring. The syrup will get darker. -You can check the consistency of the syrup by putting droplets of the syrup in a cup filled with ice water.When the balls are of the consistency of hard candy, the sugar syrup is ready (dailydelicious' note: easier by using the thermometer if you have one, the temperature will register 150°C -the hard crack stage). You can cooking it longer for more flavor, but do not let it burn. 
Once the sugar gets to the stage (both the look and the flavor) you want, take the pan off the heat. Add the salt, butter and cream, and stir until well blended.

Return the pan to the heat. Cook over low heat, stirring continously. This stage takes about 10-15-minutes. The time and/or temperature of the sugar in this stage is what determines the softness of your caramels. Let it cook down until the syrup is very thick. When you draw your spatula firmly across the bottom of the pan, the syrup will part for a split second so that you can see the pan bottom. At this stage, put droplets of the syrup in the ice water (you may have to change the water if it’s gotten too warm) and test the consistency. When it reaches the stage where when the cooled syrup rolled between your fingers it forms a soft yet cohesive ball, it is ready. (If you’re using a candy thermometer the temperature should be around 115- 120°C  - soft ball stage) You can cook it a bit longer for a firmer caramel (dailydelicious' note: 1-2 minutes you get very soft caramel, 4-5 minutes you will get hard toffee)  keep testing the consistency every couple of minutes. 

Carefully pour the caramel syrup into the lined baking pan. Let it cool until the caramel is firm Check by touching it, it should not stick to your fingers. Cut it into into squares. Any ragged edges on the cut pieces can be gently smoothed over with your finger.

Wild Flowers Honey Crème Fraîche Caramels: 
Learning the trick of something sweet.


  1. Those caramel bites looks fabulous and highly irresistible..

  2. Thank you very much for sharing, I'm sucessful with the formula!



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