I’ve never made any real candy in my life in my kitchen. My sweet foodie diva, Christy, at Zestuous on Facebook, posted this cool recipe for toffee. Now what caught my attention was that it could be made in 15 minutes. Seeing how I had a major sweet tooth craving, I jumped up from my computer, and headed to the kitchen to make Christy’s toffee. Here’s the link to her recipe! http://www.zestuous.com/2012/01/homemade-toffee-bits/
True to my Bohemian nature, I decided I wanted to make it a little different. Since I didn’t have a candy thermometer, which it called for in determining when it was ready, I had to rely upon my instincts and the general guidelines of staying within the 15 minutes for preparation. Now before you think, ‘no candy thermometer in Ally’s Kitchen!’ remember I am not a baker or candy maker. In fact, I’ve never made candy before, so this was my first attempt. I admit my first batch was a disaster, but I persevered, started over again (I mean it was just another 15 minutes and a new stick of butter and sugar), and created my version of toffee. I call it the darker crunchier first-cousin of Christy’s beautiful delicate blonde toffee.
My version of Christy’s toffee has more of a somewhat buttery bitter chocolatee and chicory taste…it’s a taste that is definitely unique! I found it intriguing and, for sure, worthy of not trashing!
Makes: About 2 cups of broken pieces
What you need:
1 stick butter
½ cup sugar
2 tsp water
¼ tsp chili pepper flakes
¼ cup chopped walnuts
Pinches of finishing salt (your choice and optional)
What you do:
Place butter, sugar and water in a saucepan over medium high heat and bring to boil for about 5 minutes. Add chili pepper flakes, and continue cooking for about 8 more minutes, until the mixture reaches 300 degrees and begins to turn brown. Pour onto a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper. Quickly and immediately sprinkle walnuts on top and finishing salt. (Note: You could add the walnuts to the mixture before pouring on to the cookie sheet, then sprinkle immediately with finishing salt.)
Cool and break into random size pieces. Store in covered container.