Sunday, December 18, 2011

Chocolate-Covered Almond Toffee

Chocolate-Covered Almond Toffee
I love the Christmas season -  mostly for the food. Each year I try a new holiday treat and this year was toffee.  I found several recipes and combined and changed parts for the recipe listed below.  My wife and both children devoured several pieces while we wrapped up packages for the neighbors.  I think we have a new favorite holiday treat.

4 cups slivered almonds
2/3 cup milk chocolate chips
2/3 cup dark chocolate chips
1 lb (4 sticks) butter
2 cups sugar
2 tablespoons water

Special Equipment: 2 large baking sheets (12 inch by 17 inch), a candy or deep-fat thermometer, heatproof spatula, offset metal spatula


Coarsely chop sliced almonds in a food processor or by hand and then separate into 1 cup and 3 cup increments. Mix 1/3 cup  each of the milk and dark chocolate chips into two bowls.  Set aside.

Butter a large baking sheet or use a non-stick Silpat to line the pan. Bring butter, sugar, and water to a boil over moderately high heat, stirring constantly, until mixture is a golden caramel color and thermometer registers 300 degrees Fahrenheit.

Remove from heat and stir in 1 cup chopped almonds. The mixture may still have separated portions of the butter, but don't worry.  Pour the mixture into the center fo the greased or lined baking sheet and spread with a heatproof spatula to the edges of the baking sheet.  Place the second baking sheet on top of the mixture and press down for an even thickness and flat finished surface.

Sprinkle one bowl of the mixed chocolate chips onto the hot toffee and let stand until the chocolate is melted (4-5 minutes).  Spread the chocolate using the offset metal spatula and then sprinkle with half of the remaining chopped almonds. Cover with a sheet of wax paper or another Silpat and then place the second baking sheet on top of the toffee and carefully invert the toffee and the sheet or Silpat. You may need to loosen the toffee with a spatula if not using a Silpat liner.

Once turned over, sprinkle the other side of the toffee with the remaining bowl of mixed chocolate chips and sprinkle with the remaining chopped almonds in the same manner described above. Put the completed pan of toffee in the freezer for approximately 30 minutes to cool it completely before breaking into pieces. Pieces can be broken with a butter knife and then transferred into an airtight container to be kept at room temperature.

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