Toffee, how do I love thee? Let me count the ways. You’re delicious by yourself, as a treat after dinner, crushed and mixed with my favorite ice cream, nestled in a handmade goodie basket, as a holiday gift or the jeweled crown on Scott Conant’s Vanilla Caramel Budino with Salted Caramel Sauce (coming soon!).
from: Scott Conant
makes: about 30 squares, about 2 inches apiece
8 ounces unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 cup sugar
¼ cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon kosher salt
8 ounces dark chocolate
1 handful pretzels, crushed with some larger pieces remaining
Line a rimmed baking sheet with a silicone nonstick baking mat (I think parchment paper would also work).
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan fitted with a candy/frying thermometer. Add the sugar, water, vanilla, and salt. Stir constantly over high heat with a wooden spoon. As the mixture cooks, it will thicken and spurt. Keep cooking and stirring until the mixture reaches 295°F, about 8 minutes. Immediately and carefully pour the toffee onto the silicone baking mat and spread thinly with an offset spatula. Let cool to room temperature.
When the toffee is cooled to room temperature melt the chocolate and pour in a thin coating over the toffee, spreading again with the offset spatula. While the chocolate is still warm, sprinkle the crushed pretzel bits over the chocolate.
Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before using, then either snap off irregular-shaped pieces of toffee for serving or transfer to a cutting board and use a chef’s knife to cut squares or other shapes. The toffee will keep for a week or so in the refrigerator.