Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Almond Tofee

Now, I have start my post by saying that if you like toffee, and you like almonds, and you like chocolate, then you absolutely have to try making this candy!
Oh my, it was one of the most delicious candies I have had, and since it was my first time at candy making, it was certainly the best I have made too! :o)
I got this recipe from Anna’s blog Cookie Madness, but I have it on my to try list since I saw a post about it, loaded with great comments about the recipe, back in 2002.
Why did I wait so long to try? I have no idea… at the time I first saw the recipe it was maybe because I was taking care of a newborn, but waiting so many years after that, oh well, there are really no good excuses but me being not as organized as I would like to be and postponing to try such delicious treat.
However, this weekend I finally made and I am sure glad I did! I was quite proud of myself, since it was my first trying with candy making and the toffee turned out perfect!
I got all prepared, bought the ingredients and a candy thermometer, told my husband and my son to go play somewhere else but the kitchen while I was concentrated with this, stayed there, with my nose super close to the pan, watching impatiently for the mercury to rise and the candy to work through its stages of ooey gooey “caramely” goodness. It took a bit of time, but it was worth every second of it.
The toffee is awesome, it tastes rich and buttery and the almonds inside just made it as good as can be. Then comes the chocolate, which melts beautifully on top of the warm candy in the pan and is then sprinkled with even more delicious almonds, which by the way were even better, as they were lightly toasted in the oven before. Let it cool, break into big chunks and…. Yummmmm, PERFECT!
So good, so good, words cannot describe!
And even though some people are afraid to give this kind of candy making a try, it was pretty simple to make. The thing here is to keep focused on the process and watch the temperature carefully; if you cook it properly the toffee will for sure set!
I made it last Sunday, we had some, I gave some for friends and the thing is all gone already. Matheus’ teachers got to enjoy this too and I have even been asked for the recipe. How good is that?!
I guess it did turn out right and certainly was a success! So much so that I am considering making some more in the next couple of days, you know, there are always some friends out there to share the goodies with, right?!
Consider giving this a try, it is a seriously delicious treat!
Thanks Anna, your toffee is perfect, its name says it all, and your blog is great too, I love reading about all those cookies of yours!

I am posting here the recipe, exactly how I got from Anna’s website, as her directions are extremely necessary for the makings of the toffee. And you can also check out her post and pictures at her yummy cookie blog, Cookie Madness!

Best-Ever Almond Toffee
1 1/2 cups sliced almonds, divided use
2 sticks butter (I use salted) -- 1/2 pound
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup warm water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
8 ounces good quality dark or milk chocolate, chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spread 1/2 cup of the almonds on a non-stick cookie sheet and bake for 6-8 minutes or until toasted and aromatic. Set aside.
Line a 13x9 inch pan with parchment paper and set next to stove.
Place butter in a heavy, medium sized (3 qt or larger) saucepan and melt over medium heat. When butter is mostly melted, stir in sugar, warm water and salt. Set a deep fry thermometer in pan, being careful that bulb is not touching bottom of pan. Cook mixture over medium heat, stirring once in a while (once or twice around), until it reaches 240 degrees F.
At 240 degrees, add the remaining 1 cup sliced almonds to sugar mixture. After adding almonds, stir constantly, keeping heat at medium, until mixture reaches 295 degrees F. If temperature is not rising at a slow and steady rate, raise heat a tiny bit until mercury starts rising. When mixture reaches 295 degrees F, immediately remove from heat and stir in baking soda. Pour into parchment lined pan. The mixture should be kind of a liquid blob at hit point and if you are on track, the pan will be clean when you dump the blog onto the parchment. Mixture will begin to firm, and butter may pool and separate, Do not pour off any excess butter. Do not panic, because if you cooked the toffee to 295, your candy should set. Sometimes it just takes longer.
Scatter chopped chocolate across top of hot almond mixture and let chocolate melt into and over the candy as candy firms. Using back of a spoon, spread melted chocolate evenly over candy. Crush your toasted almonds and sprinkle over melted chocolate. Let candy cool for 1/2 hour at room temperature. Transfer to refrigerator and chill for about 1 hour to firm chocolate.
When chocolate is set is set, lift candy from pan by grasping parchment. Break candy into large chunks.


Patricia Scarpin said...

Ana, this is the perfect candy, I have to say - only delicious flavors!!!

I have a caramel recipe at home that I'll prepare for Xmas. But this recipe of yours is tempting me... :D

Anonymous said...

Que lindo! À primeira vista achei que fosse palha italiana, só quando li o título é que veio a boa surpresa. Parece mesmo uma delícia e ficou lindo, parabéns!

Karen said...

Eu vi uma receita parecida no blog do Joe. Parecem deliciosos!

Ana said...

Patricia, this is really a perfect candy, I loved it! How can you go wrong with butter, almonds and chocolate, right?!!

Dadivoce, eh muito bom, se vc precisar eu traduzo a receita p/ vc!

Karen, eh a mesma receita!!! O Joe frequenta o mesmo bulletin board que eu, e a receita foi postada la! Eh muito bom mesmo esse doce, eu amei!


Unknown said...

hummmm, parece muuuito bom!!!!
me deu ate vontade de comer!! hehehehe outro dia estava lembrando qdo vc fez rabanadaa!!! booom! nada a ver neh mas tudo bem!!!!
Beijos hermanaaa!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Akemi said...

Mais uma receitinha para a lista! Fico só imaginando a crocância deste doce, que delícia!