According to "Hotel Chocolat" recipe for the "caramel" bar, there is barely 10-15% of caramelized sugar. I tried my caramel milk chocolate recipe:
20% cacao nibs
28.6% cacao butter
15.4% caramelized sugar
27% skim milk powder
9% Cashew nuts
What I found is just a slight hint for caramel flavour.
I carmelized the sugar on a pan, the color changed to caramel color and the temperature was higher than 160C. By all parameters it was a good caramel.
I also think to caramelized the milk powder but its time consuming and the flavour is approximately the same (according to previous experience).
I is noteworthy to mention that I mix 50% of Hotel Chocolat caramel with 100% dark chocolate and I could still sense the caramel.
So, What is the secret?