Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Bloom's English Toffee

This toffee has been on my December "to do" list since our Texas years.  The recipe card is fading and one corner was chewed off by a toddler boy many years ago.  The same boy that looks forward to a bag of the toffee every Christmas.  It comes from a friend who managed to make batches with an infant in one arm and three little ones hanging onto her apron strings!!  While I don't recommend making it with children around, it is the easiest toffee recipe that I've tried.  Five good quality ingredients and patient stirring is all that's required.

Bloom's English Toffee from K. Bloom and just as she taught me

1/2 lb butter
1 cup sugar
1 cup slivered almonds
1 cup finely ground pecans
8 oz good quality chocolate, finely grated

1.  You will need a jelly roll pan or a pan with sides (about 11 1/2 x 9).

2.  Melt the butter, over low heat,  in a large heavy frying pan.  I use my old cast iron skillet.  When melted, turn the heat to high and add all of the sugar and almonds.

3.  Stir continuously with a wide spatula.  You can see the type I use in the first photo.  I actually  try to fold, rather  than stir.  Continue stirring/folding constantly covering the entire surface of the pan until the toffee is a golden brown.  This change in color can occur fairly quickly.  It usually takes 5 to 6 minutes.  Just be ready to pour it out before it goes too far and burns.  Be very careful as the toffee is HOT!

4.  Press on the hot mixture and spread out as much as possible (1/4" thickness is best).  As you can see in the top photo, it won't fill the entire pan.

5.  As soon as you've spread the mixture, top with the chocolate.  Let it melt and then spread out as evenly as possible.  Immediately sprinkle the nuts over and, carefully, press down a bit.  Let cool completely and set up.  I stick it in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes.  Break into pieces.