Toffee is a sweet treat that my family used to make every year at Christmas time. I think my mom originally got the recipe from my Aunt Deb, or at least that’s what my old recipe card says. I thought I’d give this a shot this year, since it’s always been one of my favorites and my sister-in-law loves it, too.
The instructions on my old recipe card have you adding water and corn syrup to the butter and sugar mix, but I decided to go with this recipe that only called for butter, sugar and a bit of salt and promised to be easy! Also, I halved the recipe.
My prepared pan, buttered and sprinkled with nuts.
Here’s my one problem. I didn’t have a candy thermometer so I bought a thermometer at the supermarket, but when I tested it at home (it should read 212 degrees in boiling water) it didn’t work. The reading was way low. So I read up about what color the toffee is when it’s done (brown paper bag) and how it should be brittle when you drop a sample in a cup of cold water. Basically, I guessed about it was done. If it’s not done enough it wont be crunchy enough. And once I remember having a batch that was really grainy and sugary. So, I was kind of afraid how this would come out.
At the exact right moment, I hoped(!), I poured the butter and sugar mixture out onto the prepared pan. Some of the butter separated a little so I was a bit worried. I remember one year making this and the chocolate just slid off the toffee. I didn’t want that to happen. I blotted the toffee a bit with a paper towel to try to get some of the butter off. Note: Don’t do this. Your toffee will stick to the paper towel.
So, I had a feeling this didn’t turn out, but you really cannot tell until it’s cooled and you can taste it. I didn’t know what to do. You have to layer the chocolate chips on top while the toffee is still hot so that they chocolate will melt. Of course, an alternative we’ve done in the past would be to leave the toffee plain and break it up later then dip it in melted chocolate. I decided to go ahead and spread the chocolate chips on top anyway. Press my luck!
Let the chocolate chips sit on the warm toffee for a few minutes and then spread them with a spatula. Then sprinkle some ground nuts on top. I used roasted, salted almonds.
When this is all cooled down and set, you can get to breaking the toffee up into pieces.
And how did it turn out? Pretty good, actually! The toffee is really crunchy. The only thing I’d do different, besides buying a real candy thermometer, is to use a smaller pan if you only make a half batch. If I’d have used something like an 8-inch square pan, the liquid toffee would not have been able to spread as much. As it is now, my toffee is pretty thin on some pieces!