This week we’ve been making batches of Salted Caramels or Salted Caramel chocolates. A salted caramel as with any chocolate is of course only as good as its ingredients and the care and skill used during its creation. We have a wonderful dairy farm close to us – Ivy House Farm and they supply our Organic Jersey cream twice a week straight from the farm. Farmer Geoffrey Bowles is a cheeky chap and frequently makes our ladies blush on the phone when they ask for a bucket of whipping! It’s all in good fun and is certainly the best sales call of the week! Anyway I digress…
For our salted caramels we use the wonderful rich organic Jersey clotted cream made with care and love by Ivy House. Like many small dairy farms Ivy House have had to carve a niche for themselves and they’ve done this with rich Jersey organic cream and small scale production which has allowed them to supply both HRH and Fortnums. Fortunately for us they also deliver to our neighbours Sally Lunns bakery of Sally Lunn bun fame, so we’re on their delivery run.
Diana must have experimented incrementally with at least thirty salted caramel recipes and continues to refine the process. She is a perfectionist.
Our clotted cream caramel recipe produces a slightly firmer caramel in deliberate contrast to the recent trend for liquid salted caramels. The caramel making process is one that require skill and patience as exactly the right consistency and temperature needs to be reached and the copper pan needs to be watched for subtle colour changes throughout the making. As someone who has been know to burn a pan of soup when I get distracted I am not allowed to participate apart from filming the process and nibbling the offcuts – purely for research!
We use Cornish sea salt in the recipe to balance the sweetness of the caramel as has been the tradition in Brittany for many centuries. Our latest salted caramels actually mirror one of our very first French caramel chocolates from 2006, though salted caramels hadn’t become vogue at that point so we didn’t intentionally refer to them as such!
Once the correct temperature and consistency has been reached the caramel is poured onto our table between large rulers that contain the liquid caramel. The caramel then cools overnight firming up in the process whilst retaining a delicious soft creamy texture. It is then cut into squares before being enrobed in dark chocolate.
We use our house blend 75% cocoa Madagascan dark chocolate to balance the caramel. This wonderful Madagascan chocolate has also now received organic certification and has Raisetrade status. That is the beans are turned into 100% couverture in Madagascar retaining more of the money and value added skills within the country. For us this is preferable to fairtrade where beans are exported to large European processing plants.
After enrobing the salted caramel chocolates are sprinkled with decorative Fleur de sel and allowed to cool before being hand packed with care in our rather lovely gold foil blocked boxes. These too are made in England!
We’re proud of our salted caramels and hope we’ve explained some of the time and care that goes into every step of their making.
You can buy our Salted Caramel chocolates from our website today.
If you’re a wholesale customer they are available to buy from our wholesale chocolates range as both a boxed chocolate or a loose chocolate.