Salted Caramel Dreams is one of the most beautiful book titles we’ve encountered, and the recipes within are as …salted caramel-y as you’re imagining (but better!). Stock way up on butter, sugar and cream and prepare to dive into a world of slightly salty sweets, like these caramel popcorn pops.
A delicious pop, flecked with smoky salted caramel and flavoured with popcorn. Perfect for movie night.
- 2 tablespoons popcorn kernels
- 1 teaspoon sunflower oil
- Generous 1 1/2 cups whole milk
- Generous 3/4 cup heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
- Generous 1/2 cup soft light brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked sea salt
- Scant 1/4 cup superfine sugar
- 1/4 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked sea salt
Caramelized White Chocolate
- 2 cups good quality white chocolate fêves, drops or a bar chopped into pieces
- 1/2 teaspoon smoked or natural sea salt (optional)
For the white chocolate
Preheat the oven to 250ºF.
Spread the chocolate over a large, clean, rimmed baking sheet.
Heat for 45 minutes to 1 ¼ hours, stirring every 10 minutes or so until the chocolate is liquid and deeply golden, although how ‘caramelised’ or dark you like the chocolate is up to you.
Once coloured to your liking, season with the sea salt, if using, and pour into a clean jar or airtight container. Store at room temperature for up to 2 months. Heat in a pan over a low heat to bring back to a pouring consistency.
For the pops
In a medium pan fitted with a lid, cook the popcorn kernels in the sunflower oil, until they have all popped. Add the milk and cream and simmer over a low heat, stirring well, without allowing the mixture to boil. Remove from the heat and leave to steep for 1 hour.
Once infused, strain the milk and cream mixture into a clean saucepan, discarding the popcorn. Warm the mixture again over a low heat until the mixture begins to simmer, then remove from the heat.
Measure out the cornflour into a small heatproof bowl. Pour 4 tablespoons of the warm milk mixture into the cornflour, whisking well until you have a smooth paste and no lumps remain.
Add the brown sugar and sea salt to the remaining milk mixture, whisking to dissolve, then bring back up to a simmer. Turn off the heat and add the cornflour mix, whisking all the time. Return the pan to a low-medium heat and cook, still whisking, for 3–5 minutes until the mixture is the consistency of a thin custard.
Remove from the heat and strain the mixture into a jug. Leave to cool to room temperature, whisking from time to time to aid the cooling. The faster you can bring the temperature down, the better. Once cool, place in the fridge to chill completely.
Make the caramel ripple. In a small, heavy-based saucepan, make a dark dry caramel with the sugar (see recipe below). Remove from the heat then add the cream, watching out for steam and splatters. Once the bubbling has subsided, add the sea salt and stir to a smooth consistency. Leave to cool to room temperature.
Once the base mix is chilled and the caramel is cool, ripple the caramel into the jug (you will get nice big flecks). Divide the mixture between the lolly (popsicle) molds, pop in the sticks and freeze for 6–8 hours until set.
Once frozen, remove the ice pops from the moulds by running under lukewarm water for a few seconds and gently releasing. Ice pops can be stored, un-moulded in a freezer bag for 1 month.
For a delicious finish, drizzle the ice pops with a little caramelized white chocolate.