Ingredients (serve 4 to 6):
For the salted butter caramel (serves 6 or approx 40 caramels):
250 g crème fraîche
250 g caster sugar
1 tsp vanilla essence
1 pinch of salt (I use fleur de sel de Guérande)
50 g good quality salted butter
In a pan, boil the crème fraîche to a gentle simmer, add sugar and cook slowly on a medium to low heat for 20 minutes or more, or until the caramel becomes a lovely golden beige colour (make sure not to over-boil/heat as it will burn very easily). Do not stir for the first 10 minutes, you can slowly occasionally shake the pan. Remove from heat, stir in the butter and return to the heat for a few more minutes. The caramel should be sticky, thick and pasty. Pour caramel on a large sheet of parchment paper. You can pour making a circular or square shape (anything is fine as you will be chopping it into chunks later). Let the caramel cool, add another sheet of parchment paper to cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. Cut into desired amount of rough chunks.
For the chocolate mousse:
150 g black chocolate
4 eggs (separated)
60 grs caster sugar
40 ml double cream
Melt chocolate and cream on a low heat. Set aside and let it cool. In two large bowls, separate the eggs, whisk the egg yolks with half of the sugar until fluffy. In the other bowl, whisk egg whites till firm, incorporating the other half of the sugar. Add the melted chocolate/cream mixture (once it’s cooled) to the egg yolks, then fold in gently the stiff egg whites and the equivalent of two handfuls of caramel chunks (or more if desired!). Divide the chocolate mousse into individual ramekins, sprinkle with more chunks of caramel, cover with cling film and refrigerate for 2-3 hours.