This recipe is not my own. It is from Gourmet Magazine–BUT it was my first truly successful attempt at making caramels, so I plan to personalize it over time to make it my own!
2 C heavy cream
10 1/2 oz high-quality bittersweet chocolate (I used Sirius 70%)
1 3/4 C sugar
1/2 C light corn syrup
1/4 C water
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 T unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon pieces
2 tsp flaky sea salt
Line bottom of 8×8 baking pan with 2 pieces of criss-crossed parchment paper
Bring cream to a starting boil in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Reduce to low and add chocolate. Let stand 1 minute, then stir until chocolate is completely melted. Remove from heat.
Bring sugar, corn syrup, water, and salt to a boil in a heavy pot over medium heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Boil, uncovered, without stirring but gently swirling pan occasionally, until sugar is deep golden, about 10 minutes. Tilt pan and carefully pour in chocolate mixture–which will bubble and steam. Continue to boil over moderate heat, stirring until mixture registers 255 F on thermometer, about 15 minutes. Add butter, stirring until completely melted, then immediately pour into lined baking pan (do not scrape any caramel clinging to the bottom or side of saucepan). Let caramel stand 10 minutes, then sprinkle with sea salt. Cool completely in pan on a rack, about 2 hours. Carefully invert caramel onto a clean, dry cutting board, then peel off parchment. Turn caramel salt side up. Lightly oil blade of a large heavy knife and cut into 1-inch squares.
Layer in an airtight container between sheets of wax paper, or individually wrap each caramel in wax paper.