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– **Sauce:**
– Caramel sauce is made by mixing caramelized sugar with cream.
– Additional ingredients like butter, fruit purees, liquors, or vanilla can be used based on the application.
– Caramel sauce is commonly used as a topping for desserts, especially ice cream.
– Clear caramel, used in crème caramel or flan, contains only caramelized sugar and water.
Butterscotch sauce comprises brown sugar, butter, and cream, traditionally associated with toffee.

– **Candy:**
– Caramel candy is a soft, chewy treat made by boiling a mixture of milk, sugar, glucose, butter, and vanilla.
– The mixture is heated to specific temperatures to achieve the desired consistency and flavor.
Milk caramel or cream caramel is a type of caramel candy that does not reach the caramelization stage of sugar.
Toffee and butterscotch share similarities with caramel candy but differ in ingredients and cooking techniques.
Toffee and butterscotch use molasses or brown sugar, while caramel uses white sugar and is cooked at different temperatures.

– **Salting:**
– Salted caramel was invented in 1977 by French pastry chef Henri Le Roux, using salted butter caramel with crushed nuts.
– It gained popularity in France and other European countries, becoming a common snack for children.
– Salted caramel expanded beyond desserts into beverages like hot chocolate and spirits.
– The addition of salt to caramel and chocolate dishes became a trend among high-end chefs.
– Salted caramel’s appeal may be linked to its impact on the brain’s reward system, leading to hedonic escalation.

– **Colouring:**
– Caramel coloring is a concentrated product of caramelization, used as a food and beverage coloring agent.
– It is a dark, bitter liquid derived from near-total caramelization.
– Caramel coloring is commonly used in commercial products like cola.

– **Chemistry:**
– Caramelization involves the removal of water from sugar, leading to the formation of high-molecular-weight compounds.
– Different forms of caramel, such as sauce or candy, result from varying ingredients and preparation temperatures.
Glucose or invert sugar is often added in modern recipes to prevent crystallization.
– Heating sucrose and water together can produce invert sugar, but may not prevent crystallization in traditional recipes.

Caramel (Wikipedia)

Caramel (/ˈkærəmɛl/ or /ˈkɑːrməl/) is an orange-brown confectionery product made by heating a range of sugars. It can be used as a flavoring in puddings and desserts, as a filling in bonbons or candy bars, or as a topping for ice cream and custard.

A saucer of liquid caramel
CourseDessert or snack
Place of originUnknown
Created byVarious
Main ingredientsSugar
VariationsBrittles, pralines, crème brûlée, and crème caramel

The process of caramelization consists of heating sugar slowly to around 170 °C (340 °F). As the sugar heats, the molecules break down and re-form into compounds with a characteristic colour and flavour.

A variety of candies, desserts, toppings, and confections are made with caramel: brittles, nougats, pralines, flan, crème brûlée, crème caramel, and caramel apples. Ice creams sometimes are flavored with or contain swirls of caramel.

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