Chef Michael Pollan writes about health and food. In his book “Food Rules” one of his rules is particularly dangerous.
He says that we shouldn’t eat junk food unless we make it ourselves. And then we can have as much as we want. It’s most definitely the letter of the law not the spirit of the law. He hasn’t met me.
There isn’t much I can’t make. And this toffee is delicious. I brought it to my once-a-week city office where food simply appears. “Lunch is ready!” “You know where the snacks are, right?” and “Want some hot cocoa?” (spiked). It’s a magical food office. This is why the toffee compliment was so meaningful.
What is toffee?
Toffee is lazy man’s candy. Cheap gal fudge. When you need candy and there are absolutely no ingredients in the homestead, you can usually count on one thing being around. Sugar.
Toffee needs two things. It needs butter and sugar. If you don’t have butter on hand go outside and milk a cow. Make some. This is a homestead. if you don’t have sugar, you probably pushed the wrong button and got here from your keto website by mistake.
Take a chance on this junk food.
- 2 1/2 cups sugar
- 2 stick of butter (2 cups or 16 tablespoons)
- 2 tsp vanilla
- 2 tablespoons corn syrup
- really good chocolate. Or… chocolate chips
- Melt butter in a large-bottomed kettle.
- Add sugar.
- Stir forever. Slowly. On low. This is important. If you rush this, it will be grainy and bad. So, put on a podcast and stir.
- Add the corn syrup and vanilla at some point, but be careful about the vanilla splashing–it’s alcohol. The corn syrup is chemistry here–it keeps the sugar from forming crystals which make your recipe grainy if you don’t get the temp chef-perfect. If you’re one of those “I don’t use corn syrup” homesteaders, think of this–you’re about to eat two cups of sugar melted in two cups of butter topped with chocolate. Maybe you should give yourself a little wiggle room for science here.
- Cook to about 305 degrees. If your candy thermometer is as unreliable as mine, this takes about 15 minutes or so depending on whether you made a whole batch, a half batch, or a quadruple. The toffee should be brown and if you put a spoon in it and take some out, it should be chewy/getting to hard crunchy. It won’t be properly crunchy until it’s cool.
- When done, spread on flat surfaces–I have cookie sheets lined with parchment paper. Spread thin so you don’t break your teeth when you eat it.
- Top with chocolate–chips, shaved, or chopped works best. Spread it around when it melts.
- Let cool completely. Melted sugar candies are hot and dangerous. This is second or third-degree burn territory. Do not splatter this on yourself, do not stick your finger in this to taste, and if you’re a pot/bowl licker and you dip your spoon in for a taste as you cook, cool it off. You’ll get injured.
- Once cool, smash this up into “rustic pieces.” Store in a dry container
COST: $ Nearly free. This recipe costs nothing if you make butter, a buck or two if you bought it and a few pennies for the sugar. So, three bucks total if you have normal person chocolate. If you’re chocolate’s from France or Switzerland, add a few bucks.