This recipe made me wonder if our candy thermometer was broken. It seemed stuck at 240 degrees, all the while the syrup was getting pretty tan. After some brain wracking, I remembered how to do the “ol’ fashioned water drop.” You know that one, right? Cook your candy base over medium-high heat. As it reaches a caramel color, drop a bit of syrup into a cup of cold water. Once cooled (just a few seconds), take it out and bite. Is it the texture of a lollipop, “hard crack?” Cook and test again ‘til you get your desired “crack.”
This is candy season AND crazy-busy season. Let’s opt for easy: toffee. Good candy. And I was pretty surprised to see we had all the ingredients (we’re in “get ready for vacation” mode — we eat the cupboards and fridge bare). YEA, now we have TOFFEE!
Easy Almond Pecan Toffee
Makes 1-1/2 pounds
1 cup pecan halves
1 cup sugar
1 cup butter
1/3 cup water
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup slivered almonds
Line a rimmed sheet pan with heavy duty aluminum foil; coat foil with non-stick spray. Sprinkle pecan halves in the middle of the pan to within approximately 2 inches of edges.
In a heavy saucepan, bring sugar, butter and water to a boil over medium heat. Stir continuously at medium heat with a wooden spoon for 12 to 15 minutes or until syrup is a caramel color (or candy thermometer registers 310 degrees F, hard-crack stage).
Pour syrup over pecans, then quickly sprinkle chocolate chips evenly over hot candy, allow to melt for approximately 30 seconds. Using a knife, spread the chocolate in an even layer; sprinkle with slivered almonds and press gently into the chocolate. Chill approximately 30 minutes, then break into pieces. Store in an airtight container.