Instead of baking cookies for everyone this year, I have decided to make chocolate drizzled toffee popcorn. Â I am getting ready to make a batch for the friends I am going to see tomorrow. Â I don’t have nuts on hand, so this will just be toffee popcorn, but you can add up to 2 cups of your choice of nuts. Â Peanuts are a huge hit in our house, but my brother really likes when I use walnuts.
:: Â Toffee Popcorn
10 cups popped popcorn (12 cups if not using nuts)
1 cup pecan halves, toasted (optional)
1 cup whole unblanched almonds, toasted (optional)
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
1 cup butter
1/2 cup honey
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
In a large bowl, combine popcorn and nuts.
In a heavy saucepan, combine the brown sugar, butter, honey and cream of tartar; stir until the butter is melted and the sugar is dissolved. Cook, without stirring, over medium heat until a candy thermometer reads 300Â°-310Â° (hard-crack stage).
Remove from the heat.Â Stir in vanilla and baking soda until mixture is light and foamy (be careful â€“ when you add the vanilla it will spontaneously boil, so pour it in and step back to avoid the spatter). Immediately pour over popcorn mixture; toss gently using two buttered spatulas or wooden spoons. Spread into two baking pans lined with Silpats or buttered parchment. Press gently to flatten. Cool completely.
Drizzle with melted chocolate. Â Break into pieces.
Yield: about 2 quarts.
NOTE: There is a reason that sugar work is referred to as culinary Napalm.Â Be careful when cooking and working with your toffee.Â Keep a bowl of cold iced water near by at all times so if you get any of the toffee on you, you can instantly plunge your hand into the water.