Do you have a favorite recipe that you make only at Christmas time? I have a few, but the family favorite is toffee! I make it "my way", which means I don't follow common candy making rules--Martha I a'int! With a few simple ingredients, you can be enjoying this sweet treat in no time.
1 C. butter
1 C. sugar
2 Tbsp. water
chopped almonds--approx. 1/2 cup
chocolate--3 Hershey's bars or a 1 C. of chocolate chips
Note: Pictures show a DOUBLE batch, recipe is for a single batch. I recommend making a single batch until you become a toffee aficionado as it can be quirky.
Start by chopping some almonds and sprinkling them on a pan (this sad old pizza pan is 25 years old--a wedding gift).
Over medium to medium high heat, melt 1 cup of butter--the real stuff! I use a large skillet to make the toffee in--the bigger the surface area, the better. I am sure a heavy copper bottomed pan would be considered best, but I use what I have.
Add 1 cup of sugar (my sugar may look funky--it is organic, raw sugar) and 2 TBSP of water. Stir with a wooden spoon.
As it starts to boil, stir occasionally, but not constantly.
It will foam and start to turn colors. i did not wash down the sugar off the sides--I think I am supposed to, but I do not.
I also do not use a candy thermometer. I do use the cold water test--dropping a bit of the boiling mixture in cold water--when it cracks it is done.
I go on color mostly, and smell. It will smell like it is SLIGHTLY burning--watch carefully at this stage and will turn a deep caramel color. When it gets to this stage, I test it often. The biggest mistake I make is pulling it off the heat too soon. It usually takes about 15 minutes.
When it is a good color and cracks in ice cold water, pull it off and pour over chopped almonds.
I top mine with Hershey's chocolate bars--6 for a double batch.
Lick melted chocolate off spatula.
Sprinkle with more chopped almonds.
Wait patiently for chocolate to harden--I do not recommend putting it in the fridge or freezer to speed up this process--it makes the chocolate not stick to the toffee.