Thursday, March 4, 2010

Chocolate Fondants with Salted Caramel Sauce



































I spent a few days at home with my family in Paris which is always a favorite way to catch up on anything culinary. I have difficulty finding fresh fish on a regular basis in Montreal, so Paris is always a great time to indulge. My highlights from this trip were scallop carpaccio with lime vinaigrette and simple pan fried sole fillets with lightly creamed spinach. Another favorite? Marinated salmon with pink peppercorn, pickled cucumbers and good olive oil. I also got to spend a couple hours at l'Atelier des Chefs with my mom - a new cooking class concept where you learn how to make a couple dishes with a chef and then get to taste the results as group.

The main dish was good, but the dessert was definitely an easy favorite: Chocolate Fondants with Salted Caramel Sauce. The salted caramel sauce was definitely the highlight for me. You could spoon it over a less indulgent fruit salad, or over vanilla bean ice cream. It's also a great and easy way to dress up your favorite brownie recipe. The salty-sweet combination is always a winner in my book, so this was a real delight! Have you ever tried adding a little fleur de sel on top of a frothy homemade hot chocolate? If you haven't, give it a try - the deep chocolate flavor just bursts through and it's absolutely delicious!

Chocolate Fondants with Salted Caramel Sauce
Serves 6

For the Fondants

200 grams of Dark Bittersweet Chocolate
20cl of milk
135 grams of egg whites
55 grams of granulated sugar
10 grams of cornstarch
40 grams of egg yolks
20 grams of unsalted butter

For the Salted Caramel Sauce

200 grams granulated sugar
40 grams of salted butter
30 cl of heavy cream

Preheat your oven to 450°F.

In a small saucepan, place the milk and bring it a high simmer. Whisk in the cornstarch until the mixture thickens. Remove from the heat and reserve. Melt the chocolate in a double boiler. Butter 6 individual-sized ramekins, sprinkle extra granulated sugar over the butter and shake off excess.

Beat the egg whites to soft peaks using a hand mixer. Add the sugar and beat until hard peaks (about 2 minutes).

Make sure the milk mixture is smooth - if it isn't, whisk to bring the mixture back to a smooth consistency. In a separate bowl, slowly mix the egg yolks with the milk (which should be lukewarm at this point) adding yolks a little bit a time to make sure the eggs don't heat too fast. Add the melted chocolate and mix until well incorporated. Add 1/3 of the egg whites and whisk to loosen the batter. Add the rest of the egg whites and very gently fold them in to not break them and keep them fluffy and airy.

Bake in the oven for 8 minutes.

Salted Caramel Sauce
While the fondants are baking, make the caramel sauce. In a saucepan, add the sugar on medium heat and let it caramelized (about 5 minutes). Be very careful and keep a constant eye on the sugar as it will start burning quickly and is extremely warm. If the sugar seems to pile up in certain areas of the saucepan, gently swirl the pan. Don't use a wooden or silicone spoon as the sugar will stick and get messy. Swirl as little as possible though, and let the caramelization happen on its own. Once the sugar just reaches a nice amber color, reduce the heat to low, and add the butter in small cubes. Be careful as the sugar might splatter. Once the butter has melted, add the cream. Taste and adjust with an extra pinch of salted to taste.

Remove the fondants from the oven and, using a small spoon poke a small hole in the center of the fondant. Add a couple spoonfuls of salted caramel sauce and serve immediately.

27 comments:

Joie de vivre said...

I love the salt + caramel combination. Your sauce looks wonderful. I was so sad when Starbucks discontinued their salted caramel hot chocolates this past winter. Those were a little piece of heaven.

Kitchen Butterfly said...

I've never tried fleur de sel on hot chocolate but I love it on chocolate caramel shortbread....love ly looking fondants!

Cheri said...

Sweet and salty is definitely a favourite for me. This looks absolutely delicious. I will have to give it a try along with the fleur de sel on hot chocolate. Oh my.. now I'm having cravings.

Choclette said...

Oh this sounds so good and you make it sound so easy. I had a go at a salted caramel tart a few months ago and made a bit of a mess of it so haven't dared tried making salted caramel again.

Sook said...

chocolate + caramel = perfect combination! looks great!

Chanel11 said...

Salted caramel sauce- bookmarked and ready to be tasted -thanks for the recipe :)

Nina Timm said...

Gosh I will jump right to dessert and give the meal a miss, yummy!!!!

Pennies on a Platter said...

Great idea about spooning over a fruit salad! Yum!

Kathleen said...

Oh baby this sounds too yummy!

The Italian Dish said...

Too funny - I was looking for a caramel sauce last night to make today and then your post showed up in my e-mail this morning! Perfect! And it looks so great.

Anonymous said...

Question - I don't think I've ever seen centiliters in cooking, just milliliters. I can't find a conversion for centiliters, either. Is there a conversion you can provide for that? Thanks!

Chocolate Shavings said...

Anonymous: It should be about one cup worth of whole whipping cream (1 cl = 10 ml).
Let me know how the dessert turns out if you get to try it!

Mélanie said...

Je suis tjrs à la recherche de la parfaite recette pour des fondants au chocolat; je pense que je vais tester celle ci!!

Xiaolu @ 6 Bittersweets said...

Oh you sure got my attention with that sauce. These look so tasty!

Anna said...

Wow...I'm glad you came to my site so I could find yours. You have beautiful things here. Totally saving you to my faves. ;-)

Christiana said...

I just came across your blog and its wonderful! I am now a follower! Chocolate fondants make me weak in the knees! Wonderful job
I have my own blog too and would love to know what you think!
http://petittreat.blogspot.com/

pigpigscorner said...

sinful sinful! Looks so goooood.

Cocoa Sensations said...

The combination of salt and caramel was intriguing. The sauce looks great and the recipes were not that hard to find.
Job well done...

Trissa said...

This is fantastic - what an assault on the taste buds! I have been meaning to learn how to make salted caramels for awhile - the sauce looks easy enough to do - I didn't realize! Had I realized this I would have made them much sooner!

Q. said...

Salted caramel makes me die. I would just eat a bowl full of the salted caramel by itself! YUM!!!

Choosy Beggar Tina said...

Salted caramels are a weakness of mine, and I'm pretty sure that I could eat that sauce sans ice cream or brownie and still be thrilled as a budgie.

SimplySweeter said...

Fabulous!!!!! Love it!!

http://www.simplysweeter.blogspot.com

Kitchen Butterfly said...

It looks HEAVENLY. I am a big salted caramel fan! With a bit of chili seeds.......

Sarah said...

This looks amazingly decadent. I know this isn't your tian post but thank you for hosting such a fun challenge! I learned a lot and really enjoyed it.

Muneeba said...

This dessert is a true winner ... love how simple it is too!

baking&love said...

Wows, this looks super awesome! I'm adding it to my favourites! :D

catarina said...

lovely!

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