Yes, here’s another last minute holiday treat idea. Another one which seemed to be a big hit in the holiday goodie bags this year. If you have a fear of candy thermometers and making candy in general, this might be a good recipe to practice with. It’s pretty straight forward, uses simple ingredients, and is ready in a relatively short amount of time.
But, first, a few things about this recipe. I made enough for three whole batches, which was enough for 45 people to have a relatively decent-sized piece of bark in their goodie bags. And, while I mixed the ingredients well and made sure that it reached the appropriate temperature, I noticed that when I poured the bark out onto the prepared baking sheets, there was a solid rim of melted butter around the edges…which, after freezing, seemed a little unappetizing to me. I was a little nervous, thinking that maybe the condensation of butter around the edges meant that it didn’t mix well, and I would have a disaster on my hands. I went ahead and trimmed off the excess butter around the edges and went to work on breaking apart the mid-portion of the poured and chilled bark. It tasted fabulous! I’m anxious to see if any of you out there have similar results.
So, if you are a peanut/toffee/chocolate fan, this recipe is one you should certainly try.
Chocolate Peanut Toffee
Servings: approximately 2 large rimmed baking sheets (again, I was serving several people. What I have posted is enough for at least two batches. Please feel free to cut this recipe in half.)
12 sticks unsalted butter (yes, I am fully aware of how much butter this is.)
6 cups granulated sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
9 cups lightly salted whole peanuts, plus about 2 more cups peanuts, chopped
24 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1. In a large Dutch oven or sauce pot over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Meanwhile, line two rimmed baking sheets with aluminum foil and generously butter the foil.
2. Add the sugar and salt, mixing well.
3. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook until a candy thermometer inserted into the mixture reaches 300 degrees. (about 15-20 minutes)
4. Remove the mixture from the heat and (very carefully) add the peanuts, stirring until completely combined.
5. Carefully pour the mixture onto the rimmed baking sheets, smoothing gently with a spatula.
6. Let the mixture stand and cool slightly, about 2 minutes or so.
7. Sprinkle the bark with the chopped chocolate and let stand for about 5 minutes. Smooth the chocolate over the bark with a spatula.
8. Sprinkle the chopped peanuts evenly over the bark.
9. Freeze the bark until firm, about 30 minutes. Once firm, break the bark apart into pieces.
Source: Gourmet, via Epicurious.