December 13th, 2011
I recently had the treat of receiving and delighting in the read Sweet Confections: Beautiful Candy to Make at Home, by Nina Wanat.
I am a sucker for sweets, (I am pretty sure that is not shocking to anyone reading this.) But truth be told, there is always something kind of intimidating to me about making candy. It seems confusing, difficult and somewhat magical! (keep in mind this is an honest confession of someone who worked as a professional pastry chef!) Well, in a warm and lovely way, Nina Wanat makes candy making a simple and friendly process.
After drooling through the pages and pages of beautiful recipes, I settled on Toffee. If you know me well- that was a totally predictable choice. I freaking love toffee. I mean, its rally just crunchy caramel, right? Uh, add some chocolate, toasted almonds and sea salt and I was done.
It was shockingly easy to make, and was quickly scarffed up at my house! (I shared Nina’s recipe below)
But the great news is, that I get to give a copy away to one of you to enjoy too!
More about Sweet Confections:
Sweet Confections is a photo-rich how-to guide and collection of 40 delicious candy recipes: from traditional favorites to innovative new twists on the classics, readers will enjoy creating handmade sweets in their own kitchen. Nina’s friendly, personable voice is perfectly suited to walking readers through the ins and outs of candymaking: her explanation of readily available ingredients and tools, as well as basic techniques such as tempering chocolate, hand-rolling truffles, and cooking sugar syrup make the art of handmade candy approachable for everyone. With photography by Diane Cu and Todd Porter, the amazing White on Rice Couple, the book is a visual delight: envision stacks of golden, crunchy peanut brittle; rows of billowy meringues; silky blueberry coconut nougat; a slab of roasted almond and dark chocolate toffee; and creamy wedges of vanilla cheesecake fudge. What a treat!
If you want to win a copy of this book, enter for chances below in SEPARATE comments:
This contest will run until Thursday, December 15th at 11:59 PT. Good Luck!
Toffee, makes 1 ½ lbs
-1 Tbs water
-1 cup butter
-1/4 cup cream
-1 cup sugar
½ tsp salt
½ tsp vanilla
5 ounces dark chocolate
1 cup toasted almonds, chopped
Flakey Sea Salt for sprinkling
1) Line a baking sheet with parchment paper
2) Boil the water, butter, cream, sugar, and salt over medium heat in a 3-quart saucepan. Stir slowly and constantly with a heatproof spatula until the syrup reaches 300 F. (Use a candy thermometer.)
3) Remove the mixture from the heat, and stir in the vanilla
4) Pour onto the parchment paper. Let stand 1 minute, then sprinkle chocolate on top of the toffee- wait 3-5 minutes for the chocolate to melt, then spread it evenly over the toffee with an offset spatula.
5) Sprinkle on the almonds, followed by the sea salt, if using.
6) Refrigerate the toffee until the chocolate is set, about 45 minutes.
7) Break into pieces and store in an airtight container.