Recipes so good it oughta' be a sin!


Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Chocolate Hazelnut Toffee

Nutella fans will love the combination of chocolate and
hazelnuts with buttery toffee!
I love toffee. One of my favorite treats is the wonderful English Toffee sold at See's candy stores in the west.

I fell in love with that particular confection way back in the early 1980's when I would visit my brother in San Diego. There was a See's store in the little mall near his house and I wandered in one day and bought some of their toffee. I was hooked for life! Finally, I'm back in the west where I can get to a See's store from time to time. In fact, there's one in the mall near my house!

Of course, nothing beats homemade treats and toffee is no different. It's surprisingly easy to make since toffee consists of sugar and butter caramelized to a crisp consistency and then spread out and allowed to cool. What could be easier?

OK, so candy making can be a little daunting and working with hot sugar is not without its dangers. A hot splash can be painful and leave quite a burn. That's why I always have a bowl of ice water handy when working with hot sugar. If the worst happens I have a quick emergency cooling location to minimize burns.

But, hey, those events are few and far between. This recipe is very easy and a great start if you aren't used to candy making. Give it a try and you'll be delighting in your own buttery and chocolate covered toffee in no time!



Chocolate Hazelnut Toffee


Nutella fans will love the combination of chocolate and hazelnuts with a buttery toffee base!

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 15 minutes
Total time: 30 minutes

Ingredients
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 4 tbs. unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/4 tsp. vanilla
  • dash salt
  • 2 oz. semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/2 cup chopped hazelnuts, toasted
Cooking Directions
  1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or non-stick aluminum foil.
  2. In a small heavy bottomed sauce pan combine sugar, water, and butter. Stir to combine. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat without stirring until sugar begins to caramelize or temperature reaches 325° on a candy thermometer.
  3. Working quickly, stir in the vanilla extract and salt. Be very careful as the vanilla has a tendency to cause a bit of sputtering in the sugar! Stir just to combine.
  4. Quickly pour the sugar mixture onto the prepared baking sheet and use a spatula to spread it to the desired thickness (thin is crisper, thick is chewier). Allow to cool for 5 minutes.
  5. Sprinkle chocolate chips evenly over the warm toffee and allow to sit for 5 more minutes then gently spread the chocolate evenly across the toffee with a spatula.
  6. Immediately sprinkle the hazelnuts over the chocolate and set aside the toffee to cool completely - at least 1 hour.
  7. When toffee is completely cool, break into pieces.
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