Friday, January 20, 2006

A Treacle Matter

Out of all of the dangerous and exciting things I have tried in my life, butter-nut toffee was never one of them. And, one could surmise, I have also never experienced making this sugary sweet.
While perusing through some recipe instructions, I noticed that this is a slightly temperamental dessert. It's very time and temperature sensitive, and requires a degree of organization that maybe muffins or a tuna casserole might not demand. In it's defense, the ingredients are minimal, and the process is quick and fairly simple (provided you can read directions and numbers on a thermometer).
The basic ingredients for toffee are butter, a type of sugar (white, brown, molasses, or treacle?), and a liquid (either milk or water). Everything after that is simply an embelishment by choice and taste. If you're in the mood for some adventure, try something truly unique and tell me if it passed the taste test.

My initial inspiration for this dish came from the creative well-spring that is the Amateur Gourmet's website. So very entertaining he is, Yoda.

Butter-Nut Toffee
Butter-Nut Toffee

2 c toasted slivered almond
1 1/4 c firmly packed light brown sugar
2 T. water
1/2 c butter (1 stick)
1 t vanilla
1/4 t baking soda
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips
shaved coconut (optional)

1.) If almonds are not already toasted, preheat oven to 300 degrees and spread them out on a cookie sheet to toast for 10 minutes.
Transfer 1 cup to an 8x10-in pan to coat bottom. Set aside the remainder.
2.) Pre-measure the baking soda and vanilla and set aside for convenient use.
3.)In a heavy, medium sized saucepan, combine the sugar, water, and
butter, and stirring constantly, bring to a boil. Stir often to prevent
burning until the mixture reaches 300 degrees (you may want to use a candy thermometer for accuracy).
4.) Remove the saucepan from the heat and add the vanilla and baking soda immediately. Pour the toffee mixture evenly over the nuts.
5.) Immediately scatter the chocolate pieces over the hot toffee. After about
5 minutes, spread the chocolate with a spatula in an even layer.
Sprinkle the remaining almonds, coconut, and any other odds and ends on top while the chocolate is still warm.
6.) Cool completely and break into pieces.

As you can see, I followed some conventional embellishments by using almonds, coconut and chocolate. But as I said before: Turn some crazy on this toffee and holler back.


At 4:13 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

MMMMMMMMMM that looks SOOOOOOOOO GOOOOD!!! monkeyliscous!!!!

At 7:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

so very sorry to hear of your injury....hope your healing and back in the kitchen.

At 11:57 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had the pleasure to sample and savory one of the aforementioned sweets.


One peice of this treat knocked me out for a couple of hours. My tongue could do nothing but recover from the ecstacy of this dessert.


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