Almond Toffee

I have been making this candy during the holidays for the past 20 years or so.  One year I made 60 pounds of it, but lately I only do about half that much.  Everybody loves it and I get requests for the recipe all the time.  It’s not difficult to make but you must have a good candy thermometer.  I buy almost all of my ingredients at Trader Joe’s. 

1 pound butter (salted) - no substitutions
1 pound brown sugar - I use C&H golden brown sugar
1 pound almonds - I buy whole dry roasted and salted almonds and coarsely chop them in a mini food processor.  This process leaves you with really big chunks, down to almond "flour".  When putting the almonds over the chocolate, I start with the biggest chunks of almonds, and then finish with the "flour", to cover any bare areas.
1 pound milk chocolate –I buy Trader Joe’s Pound Plus bars and break it into small squares. 

Set out 2 medium jelly roll pans (these are pans with sides as opposed to flat cookie sheets).  The trays don’t need any preparation.  In a heavy saucepan cook butter and brown sugar over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally at first, then continuously once the temperature reaches 220.  When the temperature reaches about 280, turn the heat down slightly so the candy won’t burn.  Keep slowly stirring until the mixture reaches the "hard crack" candy stage, which is 300 degrees.  This last stage takes about 10 minutes.  Don’t be tempted to speed things up by turning up the heat; you’ll just burn the candy.  You must have a good candy thermometer.   

Pour mixture into the pans and spread slightly to make a thinner candy.  Wait about 2 to 3 minutes then put the chocolate chunks on the candy and let it soften.  Spread the melted chocolate evenly over the candy.  Cover with the nuts starting with the biggest chunks first.  Cover with wax paper and press gently to embed more of the nuts.  Let cool, which will take 6 to 8 hours (don't refrigerate, but you could put them in a cool place like the garage).  Once the chocolate is hardened, break the candy into smaller pieces and enjoy.  A lot of the nuts will fall off.  Just put them aside for your next batch. 

Refrigeration is not necessary, but it can be a handy place for storage.
 This recipe makes approximately 3 1/2 pounds of candy.   

Best regards,
Dedra True-Scheib
Updated 10-16-2010