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Cooking + Entertaining

Caramel: the perfect recipe to prepare it at home

Caramel: the perfect recipe to prepare it at home

He caramel it is a basic preparation, obtained by melting sucrose at more than 160°C. It is used both as a decoration for sweets, cakes and ice cream and as the main ingredient to make the Crisp where he caramel sauce.

There are two different ways to prepare it: drywhich consists in dissolving the sugar directly in the saucepan, and that watersimpler and also suitable for beginners, since the sugar dissolves evenly in the water, while the latter evaporates without leaving traces.

Once cold, the result obtained with the two recipes will be a solid caramel. It is therefore important to work it while still hot, in order to form threads, shapes or other scenographic decorations.

For the preparation, use a heavy-bottomed steel saucepan, a whisk or a steel spoon and a kitchen thermometer: the caramel must indeed reach specific temperatures. To get a caramel blonde and with a more delicate flavor, the temperature should be understood between 156°C and 165°Cwhereas for a darker caramel with a more intense flavor, it should oscillate between 166°C and 175°C: above these temperatures it will burn and will not be edible.

To get a liquid caramelinstead, it is possible to make one caramel sauceadd hot water to the basic recipe, or even a salsa sauce oh well salted caramelenriched with the creamy component of fresh cream.

How to make caramel

Before preparing the caramel, get a steel saucepan with a thick, not too narrow bottom, which will prevent the sugar from crystallizing. Once you have the pan, start pouring the sugar into it 1.

Slowly add water and cook over medium heat until boiling 2.

Stir constantly to dissolve the sugar and wait for the mixture to turn golden 3.

The sugar will begin to caramelize as the water begins to evaporate 4.

When the caramel reaches the desired temperature – between 156°C and 165°C for a lighter caramel or between 166°C and 175°C for a darker caramel – remove the pan from the heat and put it in the bath for a few seconds – mix in water and ice, in order to block the cooking of the mixture (5).

Using a steel spoon, create the shapes you want: once cold they will solidify and you can use them for your decorations 6.

Tips

To make the caramel you can also use it brown sugar: the end result will be a darker sauce.

We advise you to immediately remove any splashes that will form during cooking using a small moistened brush.

In dry mode it will be more difficult to obtain an amber caramel, because the sugar will tend to brown quickly.

If you need to use caramel for decorations, we recommend that you prepare it and use it at the time. In fact, caramel suckshumidityan external factor that could compromise its watertightness.

Variants

He caramel it’s a lot of preparation versatile, excellent for decorating cakes and other desserts. Below we offer the dry version of caramel and three saucesmore liquid and creamy: basic caramel sauce, salted caramel sauce and a toffee sauce, enriched with fresh cream.

Dry caramel

If you want to prepare solid caramel using the dry modeyou will need it 350 grams of sugar, add a spoonful at a time to a heavy-bottomed steel saucepan. Pour in the first spoonful and let the sugar melt gently over low heat, swirling the pan without stirring. As soon as the first part of sugar is dissolved, add another tablespoon and proceed as described above, until the sugar is completely dissolved. Once dissolved, let the sugar take on the desired color.

caramel sauce

If, on the other hand, you want to get a creamy caramelyou will need to prepare one caramel sauceideal for decorating a classic New York Cheesecaketo prepare the caramel cream or to line the molds for Panna cotta and make them more greedy ice cream cups. In this case, just add hot water to the caramel, made either in dry mode or in water mode. When the caramel has reached the desired color, add 150 grams of hot water: as soon as the mixture begins to boil, wait for the foam to dissolve and mix with a spoon or a steel whisk. The caramel sauce will then be ready to enhance your desserts.

salted caramel

Excellent for making gods Caramel popcorn or fantasies good good al caramello, the salted butter caramel includes the addition of fresh cream, salt and butter: 3 fundamental ingredients to obtain a creamy sauce. It is perfect for icing cakes, cheesecakes or other preparations and is characterized by a strong and particular taste, obtained from the sweet-salty contrast.

Caramel caramel sauce

To prepare the caramel sauceinstead, simply prepare the caramel, add 200 ml fresh cream and mix quickly with a whisk. Caramel sauce is quite runny, so it’s important to wait until it cools to room temperature and in the refrigerator before using.

storage

The caramel must be kept an airtight glass jarin fridge or in a cool place. Caramel decorations, on the other hand, should be kept in the freezerto prevent moisture from softening them.

Curiosity: what is in caramel?

The caramelization is a phenomenon of sugar browningwhich, at temperatures above 160°C, breaks the molecular bonds that make it up and promotes the evaporation of the water it contains.

Sugar (also called “sucrose”) is in fact a disaccharide, formed from two monosaccharides – fructose and glucose – which, in contact with heat, tend to solidify and form a viscous and sweet sauce, called “caramel“.

The latter can be obtained from white sugar, cane sugar and even honey.

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