English Toffee is THE epitome of classic toffee. It's rich and buttery, with a firm snap and a crisp texture that doesn't stick to your teeth. Of course, it's delicious on its own, but it really shines when it's paired with a thick coating of dark chocolate and a sprinkling of nuts.
English toffee can be a little temperamental to make, so don't be discouraged if it takes you a few tries to get it right. A few troubleshooting tips:
- Do not substitute margarine for the butter—it won't work in this recipe.
- Read this article about what to do if your butter separates while cooking toffee.
- 3/4 cup whole almonds
- 1 lb. (2 cups) unsalted butter
- 18 2/3 oz. (2 2/3 cups) granulated sugar
- 1/3 cup water
- 1/4 cup light corn syrup
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1 lb. semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate
1. Toast the nuts by spreading them on a cookie sheet and placing them in a 325-degree oven for approximately 10 minutes. Stir them every 3-4 minutes, and remove them once they darken and become fragrant. Let the nuts cool, then chop them finely with a knife or food processor.
2. Prepare a 12x16 inch cookie sheet by lining it with aluminum foil and spraying it with nonstick cooking spray.
3. Combine the butter, sugar, water, corn syrup, and salt in a large heavy saucepan over medium heat.
Stir constantly to dissolve the sugar and melt the butter. Insert a candy thermometer and bring the candy to a boil, periodically brushing down the sides with a wet pastry brush to prevent crystallization.
4. Continue to cook the candy, stirring frequently, until it reaches 300 degrees. If the candy appears to separate (with a layer of melted butter on top) stir vigorously to make it come back together again. Watch the candy as it approaches 300, since it cooks quickly and can scorch at high temperatures.
5. Once the candy reaches 300 degrees, remove from heat and pour it onto the prepared baking sheet. Use a spatula or spoon to spread the candy to an even thickness. Allow the toffee to begin to set, then spray a knife with nonstick cooking spray and score the toffee into small squares or rectangles. Allow the toffee to cool completely.
6. Once the toffee is cool, break it apart on the scored lines into small squares. The toffee can be left plain, or dipped in chocolate.
7. To dip the toffee in chocolate, begin by melting the chocolate. Place it in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave it in one-minute increments, stirring after every minute to prevent overheating.
8. Dip each piece of toffee in the chocolate, either submerging it completely or dipping it halfway in, according to your preference. Place dipped toffee pieces on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil. While the chocolate is still wet, sprinkle the top generously with chopped nuts. Repeat with remaining toffee, chocolate and nuts.
9. Place the toffee in the refrigerator to set the chocolate, about 20 minutes. Once set, toffee can be served immediately or stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.