There are just some things that we (royal we, mind you) associate with The Holidays – snow, family gatherings, fat-laden foods, sweet treats. That’s what makes this toffee perfect for sharing over the holiday season; equal volumes of butter and sugar, caramelized into airy, crunchy perfection and then topped with chocolate peanut butter and festive sprinkles. I don’t see how you can go wrong.
I warned you yesterday that I was in Serious Christmas Mode. Presents are wrapped (except Corey’s, because we’ve still got to pick that one up), cards are sent, treats are made. More treats are made. Even more treats are made. You get the idea. Today was more of the same. I made a hazelnut zuccotto, salted caramel sauce (because it’s pretty much just a condiment I keep on hand now, and I’ll need it for that butter cream frosting I mentioned yesterday), and this buttercrunch toffee. If you like Heath bars, you should try this. I think the toffee part tastes very similar, but is more melt-in-your mouth. It kind of has the crunch and meltiness of one of those pastel after-dinner mints. Only it’s much better. Really.
What you need:
- 1 cup butter
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 2 tablespoons water
- 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 bag (3 – 4 oz.) milk chocolate chips
- 1/4 bag (3 – 4 oz.) peanut butter chips
How to do it:
Line a jelly-roll-sized baking sheet with foil and spray with oil. Set aside. Melt butter in heavy-gauge pan, over medium-low heat. Add sugar and salt and stir until dissolved. Stir in water and corn syrup (the mixture will bubble and seize a bit when you do this, but shouldn’t boil up all over the place). Using a pastry brush, wash down the sides of the pan with water to rinse off any sugar crystals. Place a thermometer into the whole mess, making sure the bulb isn’t on the bottom of the pan. Switch to a new spoon – sugar crystallizes less easily on wood than metal, so I recommend using a wooden spoon for this part – and stir slowly and gently until the thermometer reads just over 300 degrees. Remove from heat. Working quickly, stir in the vanilla and baking soda. As soon as they’re incorporated, pour onto prepared baking sheet.
Sprinkle chips over and let sit until they’re shiny. Using the back of a spoon or offset spatula, spread gently over cooling toffee. Sprinkle with sprinkles (like I did), or toasted nuts (traditional, but not sharable with all my friends), or whatever you want. They’re yours after all :). Let cool until hard (you can freeze or refrigerate to speed up this process) and then break into small chunks. If you want to be precise, I hear a pizza cutter works well for this.
Store in an airtight container for up to two weeks.