These caramels are easy to make and great to prepare as a treat or as a special gift. You can also pour the caramel mixture into silicone ice cube trays for perfect square treats that pop out easily.
Yield: 81 1-inch square caramels
Unsalted butter, for greasing pan
1-1/2 cups heavy cream
1-1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup plus 2 tablespoons light agave necture
1 teaspoon salt
9 ounces 62% semi-sweet chocolate, finely chopped
2 tablespoons fleur de sel (or sea salt)
Cut a 9 x17-inch piece of parchment paper. Lightly butter a 9x9x2-inch pan and line it with the parchment paper, letting it extend evenly over two opposite sides.
Stir together the cream, sugar, agave, and salt in a pot with a heavy bottom, and clip a candy thermometer to the side of the pot. Stir until temperature reaches 220˚, then continue to cook until the mixture reaches 250˚. Remove the pot from the heat and let cool for 5 minutes. Note: Do not stir above 220˚ otherwise caramel crystals will form around the spoon and create an undesirable texture.
Add the chocolate and stir with a heatproof spoon or spatula until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. Pour into the prepared pan and spread into an even layer with a small offset spatula.
Once the caramels start to set, sprinkle the fleur de sel (or sea salt) onto the surface. Allow the caramels to cool at room temperature until firm, at least 2 hours.
Lift the caramels block from the pan, using the parchment paper “handles,” And place on a cutting board. Dip a knife in hot water, dry and cut the caramels into 1-inch squares, heating (and drying) the knife as necessary.
Store the caramels in an airtight container.