This Chocolate Toffee Buttercrunch tastes like it is from a fancy chocolate store. So easy!
I made this Chocolate Toffee Buttercrunch three days in a row because I was trying to get it just right. The first try was great but I wanted to test it again. The second time I tried putting it in a 9-inch square pan for a really thick toffee. I didn’t love it. If you think about toffee, if you make it really thick it’s hard to eat. Go figure. The last time I made it I realized that I liked it with a little less chocolate and that I liked to cook it a little longer so that it had that buttery toffee flavor and didn’t just taste like sugar. My first thought for these were how perfect they would be for Christmas plates.
Speaking of Christmas…last night my husband mentioned that our paper, The Sun Sentinel, wanted to do a Christmas video/article on our family either tonight or next week sometime. I’m kind of crazy and hyper focus on things that are coming up making myself more anxious than I actually should be so I opted for tonight so that I could just get it over with. Cleaned the house, got the kids dinner and then dressed (not my first rodeo), and then waited for my husband to get home. I looked over at our Christmas tree 15 minutes before the camera crew was supposed to come and the top half of the tree was dark. The lights had gone out. Seriously. I tried to kind of rearrange the lights so it wasn’t so noticeable but it still looked really sad. They ended up taking our picture for the paper right in front of the struggling tree. We’ve had it since our first year of marriage (15 years ago) and I declared this year it’s last year in our house. I’m sure I’m the only one who will notice…hopefully.
Let’s get to the toffee! I used a saucepan with high sides. You want to use something deep enough so that it doesn’t boil over but not too deep that you get hot spots.
The mixture will boil like this. The key is to NOT stir it.
You want the temperature to reach 300 degrees Farenheit. I have this Silicone Spatula with built in thermometer that is incredibly useful. It’s not cheap but it is worth every penny if you make candy a lot. What I learned in the three times I made this this week is that you want to not only go by temperature but also by color. Just because the thermometer reads 300 degrees also be sure that the color looks right. Just like when you’re browning butter the mixture will go from yellow to brown quickly. You have to be careful that it starts turning brown and that you pour it out immediately so that it doesn’t keep cooking. Also be sure to test all parts of the pan so that you aren’t accidentally measuring a hot spot when the toffee isn’t actually done.
Believe it or not we ate all three batches of toffee. We kept it in the fridge since Florida is HOT and just snacked on it whenever we opened the fridge.
Chocolate Toffee Buttercrunch
- 1 cup (16 tablespoons) unsalted butter
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1½ cups sugar
- 3 tablespoons water
- 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
- 2 cups diced pecans, toasted
- 2 cups semisweet chocolate, finely chopped; or chocolate chips
- In a large saucepan, melt the butter. Stir in the salt, sugar, water, and corn syrup, and bring the mixture to a boil. Boil gently over medium heat, WITHOUT stirring, until the mixture reaches hard-crack stage (300°F on an instant-read or candy thermometer). The syrup will bubble without seeming to change much for awhile, but be patient; all of a sudden it will darken, and at that point you need to take its temperature and see if it’s ready. (If you don’t have a thermometer, test a dollop in ice water; it should immediately harden to a brittleness sufficient that you’ll be able to snap it in two, without any bending or softness). This whole process should take about 10 to 12 minutes. Pay close attention as it will go from ready to burnt if you aren’t looking.
- While the sugar mixture is gently bubbling, spread half of the nuts, in a fairly closely packed, even single layer, on a parchment lined baking sheet (a half sheet pan works well). I made mine into a rectangle. It’s not necessarily going to go to the edge of your pan just as big as you can make a rectangle with the nuts. Top with half the chocolate.
- When the syrup is ready, pour it quickly and evenly over the nuts and chocolate. Immediately top with the remaining chocolate, then the remaining nuts.
- Wait several minutes, then gently, using the back of a spatula, press down on the chocolate-nut layer and spread the chocolate around.
- When mixture has completely cooled, break or cut it into uneven chunks.
- Store cooled candy tightly wrapped; it’ll stay fresh for a couple of weeks at room temperature. Freeze for longer storage.