Hazelnut Butter Toffee

Even if you are not usually a “sweets” person, this Hazelnut Butter Toffee will make you take a second, third and well several more bites. You can use either Almonds or Hazelnuts, but I have to say the Hazelnuts are sooooo much better!

1 cup (two sticks) butter, plus a little extra for buttering the saucepan and baking sheet
1 c. sugar
3 Tb. water
1 Tb. light corn syrup
1 c. chopped Farm Fresh Slivered almonds or Farm Fresh Blanched Hazelnuts
3/4 c. finely chopped bittersweet chocolate (or semisweet chocolate chips)

Butter the sides of a heavy 2-qt. saucepan, then melt 1 c. butter in it. Butter a baking sheet with sides (jellyroll pan).

To toast hazelnuts or almonds, spread out on a baking sheet and toast at 350–about 8 minutes for hazelnuts, 10 for almonds. To skin hazelnuts, spread warm nuts in a clean dishtowel and rub them. Many (not all) of the papery skins will come off. Don’t worry about the stubborn ones.

Add sugar, water, and corn syrup, cooking and stirring over medium heat until the sugar dissolves and the mixture boils. Continue cooking and stirring until the mixture reaches 290 degrees, watching carefully after 280 degrees. (Note: The temperature will hover close to boiling, 212 degrees, for awhile as the water boils off. Don’t be fooled into thinking you can leave the pan unattended or stop watching the temperature. One the excess water is gone, the temperature will shoot up fast.)

Remove from heat and quickly and carefully stir in 1/2 c. of almonds.

Carefully pour the hot mixture onto the buttered baking sheet. After 3 minutes (and not a second less, as I discovered), sprinkle the surface with chocolate. When the chocolate begins to melt, spread it evenly over the candy. Sprinkle the remaining nuts over the top.

Chill until firm (at least 15 minutes), then break into pieces. (Note: Slip a spatula under a corner of the toffee and lift to easily remove chunks from the pan.)

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