Chocolate-Covered Toffee with Roasted, Salted Pumpkin Seeds

20 Dec

This is the first in a series of several candies that I am making for the holidays.  Some will go to friends, some will be in bowls around the house, some will be thank you presents and hostess gifts. It has been a while since I have made candy, a few years at least.  Candy can be difficult.  Sugar gets very hot, chocolate burns easily.  There are all kinds of temperatures and stages to remember.  So I am starting out easy, just getting my feet wet.

Say hello to toffee.  You don’t really need a candy thermometer to get this one right and although tempered chocolate results in a professional sheen and delicate snap when bitten into, simply melting some good quality chocolate will do just fine.  Pumpkin seeds are a nod to the season, feel free to substitute any toasted nut.

Chocolate Covered Toffee with Pumpkin Seeds & Sea Salt – Recipe courtesy of Chef Nancy Olson of Gramercy Tavern via NY Magazine

6 oz. (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoon water
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1 teaspoon. vanilla extract
6 oz. dark chocolate (I used 60%)
1 cup pumpkin seeds, toasted
sea salt to taste
Line a sheet pan with parchment or a silicon baking mat.
In a medium saucepan stir together butter, sugar, and water over low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Raise heat to medium and stir constantly with a wooden spoon. Cook until a beautiful toffee color.  A candy thermometer will read approximately 295ºF.Add salt and vanilla extract. Be careful!  The toffee will bubble and sputter – remember it is almost 300°.   Pour onto the prepared sheet pan and let cool completely.

Wipe the surface of the cooled toffee dry with a paper towel  – the fat from the butter can make it difficult for the chocolate to adhere properly.

Spread tempered chocolate over completely cooled toffee.

Sprinkle with toasted pumpkin seeds and sea salt while the chocolate is still slightly tacky, so that the pumpkin seeds and salt adhere to the surface of the candy.

Break the toffee into desired-size pieces.


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