It’s my second week participating in Meal Planning Magic‘s 12 Weeks of Christmas Treats. This week’s recipe is something you might keep to yourself or give away in a holiday care package (as I am doing) or as part of a hostess gift.
This Salted Caramel Hot Chocolate Mix will be shared between myself and a couple of care packages some lucky family members will be receiving. I’ve had my eye on this recipe for quite some time, since last year’s Hot Chocolate Mix came out so well. But my fear of caramel held me back. You see, I burn caramel beyond saving every time I make it. This time though, I did it! One batch, no burning! It’s definitely cause for celebration! I enjoyed a nice cup of this hot chocolate while working on this post. After all, I can’t very well send a care package without verifying that the treat is good, can I? Sweet, chocolatey, and slightly salty, it’s a good thing I already packaged up the hot cocoa mix for those packages. Otherwise, they might not have gotten any.
Makes 32 servings
- 2 1/2 c. granulated sugar
- 3 Tbs. vanilla extract
- 1 1/2 c.cocoa powder
- 1-3 Tbs. fleur de sel (I used 1 Tbs, but next time, I’ll be using 2 Tbs.)
- 1 c. dry milk powder
- 3/4 c. packed light brown sugar
- 10 oz. good quality bittersweet chocolate chips
Make the Caramel: Place the granulated sugar in a large, heavy saucepan over medium heat. As the sugar begins to heat up, prep a rimmed baking sheet by covering with a piece of parchment paper. When sugar starts to melt (mine immediately turned amber), swirl mixture using the handle of the pan. Stay by the stove, swirling pan every so often until most of the sugar is melted and mixture is a deep amber. If you’re afraid of burning, lower heat a little and continue to cook. This step may take up to 20 minutes.
Measure vanilla out into a small prep bowl. When sugar is almost completely melted and amber, remove pan from heat. Add vanilla (the vanilla will bubble immediately) and quickly whisk in. The mixture will bubble, but continue whisking until mixture is smooth.
Pour onto prepared baking sheet, into a thin layer if possible, and allow to sit and harden for at least 1 hour.
Make the Mix: Break caramel into large pieces. Add half of the caramel to a food processor and turn on. When pulverized into a fine powder, add other half. When all of the caramel had been turned into a powder, add cocoa, fleur de sel, dry milk powder, and light brown sugar. Pulse until smooth. Finally, add the chocolate. Process until mixture is a fine powder, devoid of lumps.
Store in an airtight container.
Serve: 1 c. hot milk + 3 Tbs. hot cocoa mix