Wooohooo!!! As of yesterday at 4PM-ish I have the next two weeks off! Besides my trip, I am planning on spending a lot of time in the kitchen. However, my posting for the next week or so will be light due to the fact that I won't really be around until after Christmas (besides this weekend). I did manage to squeeze in time to make this candy which I plan on sharing with my friends in the spirit of the holiday. Remember back when I stated that I suck at candy making? Well, I attempted that pepita brittle four times before I decided to call it a day and declare the brittle the winner. My best attempt looked like this:
This was so annoying and I blame the recipe because even the switch to refined sugar (from organic) yielded these results. After all the failed attempts and a waste of a whole lotta sugar, I wasn't so sure I wanted to attempt another candy recipe so soon, but I had pretty decent results when I made last month's caramel, that I decided to give it another go. This time, the recipe only took me two tries. The first time, I toasted the almonds first, but realized that they toasted a lot when I added them to the sugar mixture. The first batch came out tasting good, but slightly burned. I immediately tried it again with un-toasted almonds and thought this was the better tasting of the two. I think the only change I would make next time is to add a little bit of salt to the mix to give it another dimension.
I borrowed this recipe from the Daring Bakers' July Challenge who got it from Carole Walter.
(Adapted from Carole Walter)
1 cup slivered raw almonds
2/3 cup Sugar
Line a jelly roll pan with parchment and lightly butter.
Put the sugar in a heavy 10-inch skillet. Heat on low flame for about 10-20 min until the sugar melts around the edges. Do not stir the sugar. Swirl the pan if necessary to prevent the melted sugar from burning. Brush the sides of the pan with water to remove sugar crystals. If the sugar in the center does not melt, stir briefly.
When the sugar is completely melted and caramel in color, remove from heat. Stir in the nuts with a wooden spoon and separate the clusters. Return to low heat and stir to coat the nuts on all sides. Cook until the mixture starts to bubble. **Remember – extremely hot mixture.** Then onto the parchment lined sheet and spread as evenly as possible. As it cools, it will harden into brittle. Break the candied nuts into pieces.