My husband’s Grandma Swenson was known for her English Toffee. I never met his sweet grandma but my mother in law taught me how to make this recipe when Dave and I first got married. Trust me when I say that there is a reason that this recipe has been passed down from one generation to the next!
When I make candy, I don’t like to use a candy thermometer. I don’t think that they are as accurate as the cold water method and they always get in the way. This is also the method that my Grandma Cope taught me to use.
I have found that the first few times you make the toffee, it is best to have another adult assist you. That way while you stir the toffee they can be checking the toffee in the cold water. Having an assistant also comes in handy when you are pouring the toffee onto the baking sheet. The toffee is very hot and can be difficult to scrape out while holding the pan at the same time.
English Toffee isn’t very difficult to make but it can be very intimidating. Make sure to read over the instructions very well and have all the ingredients measured out before you begin.
With love from my kitchen to yours,
Bernice’s Famous English Toffee
1 cup of finely chopped walnuts
1 large Hershey chocolate bar
2 1/2 c. sugar
½ c. of light corn syrup
½ c. water
1 lb. butter
1 cup of sliced almonds
1/2 tsp. of baking soda
1. Pour cold water into a small bowl. Place the bowl next to the stove with 2 to 3 spoons next to it. Measure out all the ingredients and have them ready. Place an ungreased cookie sheet on a hot pad so it is ready when the toffee is done.
2. In a large heavy bottom sauce pan over medium-high heat, bring the sugar, light corn syrup, butter, water, and almonds to a boil. You will need to stir it constantly. Especially when it comes to a rolling boil. Make sure to scrape the bottom of the pan and sides really well so it doesn’t burn.
3. Once is turns a caramel color (about 12-15 minutes), check the toffee consistency by placing a spoon into the mixture and then dip the spoon immediately into the cold water. Once the toffee on the spoon immediately turns hard, brittle, and can easily be broken in half with your fingers, then remove it from the heat and immediately stir in the baking soda. Make sure to stir the baking soda well so that baking soda is evenly distributed through out the toffee.
6. Pour the hot toffee onto the un-greased baking sheet and spread it out evenly. You need to work quickly before the toffee cools. Let the toffee sit for 5 minutes.
7. Spread the Hershey bar evenly over the toffee and let in sit for about 3 minutes so the chocolate has enough time to melt completely. Evenly spread out the chocolate. Sprinkle the chopped walnuts evenly over the chocolate. With a spatula gently press the walnuts down into the chocolate. Place the toffee in a cool place and allow it to cool completely before breaking it up.
8. To break up the toffee, press a butter knife into the toffee. Once a few pieces break apart, you can lift the toffee up and break it apart with your hands or continue to break it up with the butter knife.
9. To clean the sauce pan, fill it with hot water and let it sit for 30 minutes. The water will dissolve the toffee that is left in the pan.
Bernice’s Famous English Toffee-This is my husband’s grandmas recipe. I was surprised how easy it is to make. This is the best homemade homemade toffee recipe ever! My family begs me to make this every Christmas.
Wendy Keller says
Why this this post twice? So weird!
Wendy Keller says
I am a little intimidated by this recipe, but I love this stuff, so I”m going to try it before Christmas! Also, I don’t like walnuts, so I’m going to substitute chopped almonds on the top. Do you think I should toast them first or leave them raw? And will that be too much almond when combined with the sliced almonds in the toffee? Can I leave those out? Just wondering. Thanks for sharing!
You can do it! If you need any help or have any questions call me. I am not a big walnut fan either, but the walnuts on the toffee are chopped up so small that you really can’t taste the walnuts as much. Yes, you can substitute almonds or any other nuts if you like. If you want a more pronounce almond flavor you might want to roast the almonds. If you are worried about too much almonds you could try pecans. You could also completely leave the nuts off the top if you like.
Remember, you totally got this!
Wendy Keller says
I am a little intimidated by this recipe, but I love this stuff, so I”m going to try it out sometime before Christmas. Thanks for sharing!