If you have always wanted to experiment with candy making but were hesitant to try it , then this decadent, melt-in-your-mouth toffee is just the recipe for you. It is so easy to make with just a handful of ingredients.
These are ideal for giving as hostess gifts whether you wrap them in decorative cello bags or find a pretty plate to put them on. In fact, many times I will find plates that have a decoration on them that is either seasonal or fits the personality of the hostess to leave with them. If I am attending a number of different parties, then finding dessert or appetizer plate sets (they typically come in sets of 4) works great. A special, homemade treat and a plate they can use again and again for entertaining is a bonus. Having a candy thermometer will help you make this recipe as you want to make sure you reach the desired temperature in order for the candy to harden. Candy thermometers will have the different stages (hard ball, soft ball) written on them to assist you in achieving the outcome of the candy you are looking for. A tip for you is to use a candy thermometer where the thermometer itself is set in a frame so it is not resting directly on the bottom of the pan. This can give you a misleading reading. This style has worked well for me:
- 2 cups butter
- 2 cups white sugar
- 1/3 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups chocolate chips - semi-sweet
- 1 cup finely chopped nuts - almonds, pecans, walnuts or hazelnuts (optional)
- In saucepan, combine the butter, sugar and salt. Stir till butter is melted. Low heat. Raise heat to medium to allow mixture to come to a boil. Cook until mixture becomes a dark, golden color and the temperature reaches 285 degrees. Stir occasionally.
- While toffee is cooking, put a silpat or other liner (parchment paper, aluminum foil) onto baking sheet.
- Once the temperature reaches 285 degrees, pour onto baking sheet. Spread the chocolate into a thin layer once it melts. Sprinkle nuts on melted chocolate.
- Let the toffee chill until set. Break into desired pieces. Store in a sealed container.
- Temperature is important when making candy. Candy thermometers will have markings on them to show you when you reach soft or hard ball stages. I reached 300 degrees before seeing the amber color I was looking for.
- The size of the baking sheet you choose will affect the thickness of the candy. I used a 9 x 13 to get the thickness I was looking for.