Did you know…it’s only ONE WEEK UNTIL CHRISTMAS!!! I’ve been trying to get in the Christmas spirit with lots of decorating, Christmas movies, music, and treats! One of my favourite Christmas movies is Elf. If you haven’t seen it, then you MUST put it on your holiday to-do list because it’s hiiiiilarious. If you have seen it, you know exactly what I’m talking about. Buddy the Elf has so much energy and it’s mostly due to the outrageous amount of sugar he consumes. This is because “we elves try to stick to the four main food groups: candy, candy canes, candy corns, and syrup!” Love him.
While Buddy can live off of sugar, we humans definitely can’t! You can tell everyone’s on holiday diet patrol, with all the parties and events full of delicious food and drinks. When I brought these Chocolate-Almond Buttercrunch Toffee squares into the office, everyone (including the men) gave me a look that was full of love and also loathing! There were many “Oh I really shouldn’t” and some “Why not it’s Christmas time” and even some “Omg I just had Sandra’s cookies and Michelle’s muffins, what are you trying to do to me!?”
But I’m telling you, these are AMAZING. The smell is intoxicating and they literally melt in your mouth with that little added crunch from the nuts. For the most part, they are very easy to make, just have to be careful with mixing and heating the toffee. Otherwise, there’s not even baking involved. I hope you thoroughly enjoy these as much as we did…oh and also, MERRY CHRISTMAS!
Before you begin, make sure you read this recipe all the way through because it’s very timely and requires accuracy! You also need a candy thermometer because the toffee has to be juuuust the right temperature or it won’t cool properly.
Adapted from David Lebovitz
2 cups toasted almonds, chopped in different size ranging from fine to coarse
2 tablespoons water
1/2 cup (1 stick) salted butter
Big pinch of salt
1 cup white sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Optional: You can add other nuts for topping or even dried fruit if you like!
1. Lightly oil a baking sheet with an unflavored vegetable oil.
2. Sprinkle half the nuts into a rectangle about 8″ x 10″ (20 x 25 cm) on the baking sheet.
3. In a large saucepan, heat the water, butter, salt, and both sugars with a candy thermometer. Cook, stirring as little as possible, until the thermometer reads 300 F degrees.
4. Once it reaches 300 F degrees, remove from heat and stir in the baking soda and vanilla. Make sure to mix well!
5. Pour the mixture over the nuts on the baking sheet in an even layer, spreading with a spatula if you need to.
6. Cover with chocolate chips and let stand for a minute or two, then spread chocolate in an even layer.
Let it cool completely and then break into pieces to serve. It should break apart very easily and it looks more authentic all broken up into different shapes and sizes. Store in an airtight container, for up to ten days.