My friend Heather made this for me one Christmas and I’ve been making it ever year since. On average, I make at least 3 batches every holiday season to give away as gifts. It is seriously delicious. It is not hard to make, but candy can be finicky and a bit of a science experiment, so a good tip is to never walk away from it. Small deviations from the exact instructions will result in a complete do-over.
From Heather’s fabulous kitchen
Makes about 2 pounds
- 1 1/2 cup sliced almonds (divided)
- 2 sticks of unsalted butter
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 cup warm water
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 8 oz of good quality dark chocolate, broken up
Bake 1/2 cup of almonds on a non-stick cookie sheet at 350 degrees for 6-8 minutes or until toasted and aromatic. Set aside to cool.
Line a rimmed cookie sheet with parchment paper and set next to stove.
Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. When butter is melted, stir in granulated sugar, warm water and salt. Attach a thermometer to the side of the pan making sure that the bulb is not touching the bottom of the pan. Cook sugar mixture over medium heat, without stirring, until the mixture reaches 240 degrees F. The temperature may stall a bit between 218 and 223 degrees but again, it is important to monitor the temperature closely and to not walk away from the candy.
At 240 degrees, add remaining 1 cup of almonds to the sugar mixture. Stir constantly, keeping heat at medium, until mixture reaches 295 degrees F. If temperature is not rising at a slow and steady rate, raise heat very slightly. When the mixture reaches 295 degrees, immediately remove from what and stir in baking soda. Pour onto the parchment lined pan and spread to desired thickness – it does not need to reach the edges of the pan. Mixture will begin to firm. Note: Do not forego the cookie sheet and pour it onto parchment on top of a marble or granite counter – this will result in your candy cooling too fast and affect the chocolate’s ability to adhere properly to the candy.
Scatter dark chocolate pieces across top of hot candy and let chocolate melt on top of the candy as the candy firms. Using back of a spoon, spread melted chocolate evenly over firm candy. Sprinkle with toasted almonds over melted chocolate. Let candy cool for 30 minutes at room temperature. Transfer to refrigerator and chill for about 1 hour to firm chocolate. Break into pieces.