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iso a great recipe for English Toffee

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i posted this a few months ago but got no hits. i have since tried 3 different recipes and just haven't been able to get it right. does anyone have any ideas?

posted in april:

i have made my share of english toffee. every time, however, it comes out all wrong. sometimes is is too soft, not quite crispy. others it is crispy but takes days to come out of my molars.
clearly i am doing something wrong.
can anyone point me to a really great recipe? i love to make candy for my girls for easter instead of just buying a few bags of butterfingers.
thanks!

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  1. here is one I've used for 25 years. It was passed to me by a frien; I think it came from Hershey's originally. It calls for Hershey's choc bars, but I use a mix of Trader Joe's milk and semi sweet--I like te flavor better.

    The following post has a discussion about texture and temperatures which might be helpful. I do often find that the chocolate comes off when I break it apart; I think dabbing it off with a paper towel before puring the melted choc over helps some.

    For me, using very fresh butter and chocolate, and fresh roasted, knife-chopped almonds makes the difference.

    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/281890

    4 Replies
    1. re: toodie jane

      I don't have the recipe off the top of my head but I have had great success with the one in the Better Home's and Garden Cookbook (three ring binder).

      Recipes aside I have also found that the toffee does not come out right if its a humid day. I don't know if that is an issue where you live.

      Also, test your candy thermometer in boiling water ever time you make candy. Even being off by a degree can ruin a batch of toffee.

      1. re: heypielady

        you know that phrase about the cold day in hell? well, i think i could substitue that with a dry day in florida!

        so, maybe i should wait until winter to try my hand again at toffee. there ain't none of them in the forecast!!! (c:

      2. re: toodie jane

        Yes, soaking up the fat from teh top of the toffee will help the chocolate stick. But i use a very clean dishtowel, it leaves less lint! I'll dab at it gently until it doesnt stick, then dab harder. Rinding the towel under very hot water will dissolve any toffee that sticks.....

        1. re: toodie jane

          toodie jane. toodie jane.

          i have seen that post above before. in fact, when i was looking for a recipe, i searched the chowhound site with "toodie jane" and "english toffee" hoping to come across the recipe that the op in your link above used, but to no avail. i was going to send you a message (although i'm not sure if you can, i never got that far in my process) and request the recipe, but i thought that might be a little rude. (c:

          would you mind terribly posting that next time you have your recipe out?

          also, years ago, i saw an episode of martha stewart (pre-prison) where she paper toweled the top of her english toffee off, then topped with chocolate and a piece of parchment, flipped the toffee over and repeated the process. i got why she paper toweled before the chocolate wast put on, but i never understood why she retopped both sides with parchment. maybe just keepin' the bugs out.

        2. Trational English Toffee

          1# very fresh butter
          2 c cane sugar
          1/2 c water
          1 1/2 c blanched whole almonds

          Best made on a clear day with relatively low humidity.

          Melt first three ingredients in a heavy bottomed large saucepan (le Crueset works well).
          Stir as it cooks to keep candy moving. Use a candy thermometer to keep progress. At about 240, add the blanched almonds. Continue to stir as the color changes from light to medium, then to dark caramel. Do not answer phone or let kids distract you. If you stop stirring, candy will scorch. Cook, stirring, to 320 (NOT 310 which is "hard crack" stage) then careflully pour into an 11"x17" rimmed sheet pan. Hot sugar can burn you badly, so work carefully; ban everyone else from the kitchen. Work candy into pan corner and try to get the nuts distributed somewhat evenly. When hard, if the top looks greasy, dab it away with a lint-free towel.

          Melt 8 oz of good quality chopped chocolate over hot water, and pour evenly over candy. Spread to edges with a spatula. Working carefully, evenly sprinkle 1 1/2 c med-fine ( 1/8 to 1/4" chop) knife-chopped freshly-toasted almonds. Do not try to grind or chop the nuts in a blender or processor--they'll come out dusty looking and greasy in texture. Press the nuts into the melted chocolate with the back of a spatula or a small metal pan--you want good contact with the chocolate so the nuts will stick.

          When the chocolate has set, flex the pan once or twice gently corner to corner, place an identical size pan over the candy rim to rim, and quickly invert. The whole sheet of candy should drop into the second sheet pan. If it breaks , just put it back together like a puzzle, and repeat the chocolate and nuts coating.

          When set, gently lift the edge with your fingers, and press down with your thumb to break into bite-sized pieces. Store in an airtight tin (Danish Butter Cookies?) between waxed paper .

          This candy doesn't stick in your teeth like Heath Bars or Scor, it melts divinely. This is a betcha-can't-eat-just-one-piece candy. I have to hide it from myself!

          2 Replies
          1. re: toodie jane

            toodie!!! you are the best!!!
            thanks so much!
            even though you say to wait for that dry day, i am dying to make it! and my youngest chicken will be 7 tomorrow and she specifically asked for english toffee. so, even at the risk of losing a few fillings, i must try it out. but rest assured, i will try it again in the fall! (which is the middle of december in the middle of florida.
            thanks again!

            1. re: raygunclan

              don't think you'll lose any fillings, but maybe gain a few pounds...