November 7, 2012

a second helping


One of my posts is not like the others. By that, I mean that one of my posts has been viewed more than 50 times more often than the next most popular post. That's huge. We're talking almost a million hits.

Disclaimer: In no way am I making light of actual crack addiction.

Thank you, Pinterest.

Because people seem to like my tantalizing toffee so much and since so many people left comments with terrific tips and suggestions, I thought it might be prudent to revisit the recipe, answer some questions, and summarize the helpful hints.

The Q&A:

Q: Your pictures show an order of toffee-cracker-chocolate, but the recipe makes it seem that it should be cracker-toffee-chocolate. What gives?

A: My best guess is that the crackers end up in the middle because when you pour the toffee over them, they float in its goodness. It wouldn't even matter if they formed a completely solid layer because saltines have holes! So the result is kind of like toffee-swaddled saltines with chocolate on top.

Q: How long do you let the chocolate chips sit before you start spreading? Mine doesn't appear smooth and it's driving me crazy!

A: It should only take 5 minutes or so for the morsels to melt and become spreadable. Be sure to sprinkle them in an even layer and when they lose their sheen and start to sag a little, spread away!

Q: The toffee part has more of a fudge consistency. It's stiff, but not crunchy, and so it tastes too sugary. Wondering if I did something wrong? My measurements were right and I cooked the suggested amounts of time, but maybe I should have cooked longer?

A: Maybe you and I have different ideas of simmering, so perhaps try to let the butter and brown sugar cook together a bit longer on top of the stove. I wouldn't go as long as 10 minutes, though--you'll probably end up with a stiff, difficult, slightly burned mess!

Q: The bottom is super sticky/slimy. Any suggestions?

A: My suggestion would be to bake it in the oven a bit longer, even up to 12 minutes.

Q: I can't get my toffee off the foil! What do I do?

A: Beyond baking the candy a bit longer, you might try a Silpator specialty foilinstead.

Q: How do you store your toffee?

A: Any type of air-tight container would be fine, and while I find that keeping them in the fridge works best, room temperature is also okay.


What others are saying:

*Club crackers, graham crackers, and pretzels are all terrific suggestions in lieu of saltines.
*Try milk chocolate or white chocolate instead of semisweet, or better yet, use all three and swirl away! Butterscotch or peanut butter morsels would also be tasty.
*Bedeck the chocolate with chopped nuts, red pepper flakes(!), bacon, or colorful sprinkles.

Terribly Terrific Toffee/Crickle/Good Stuff/Unbelievable Toffee/Skor Bars/Funeral Cookies/Toffee Cracker Crack/Brutzel Bars
Ingredients:
  • 1 cup unsalted butter (margarine is acceptable, but not nearly as marvelous)
  • 1 cup light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 cups morsels, whether semi-sweet, milk, or white chocolate, butterscotch, or peanut butter
  • 40 saltine crackers
Directions:
Do this first:
Preheat oven to 350ºF.
Line a 15x10-inch jelly roll pan or a 12x17-inch cookie sheet with foil and spray with non-stick spray.
Lay a flat layer of crackers out on the foil.
Measure out your morsels and set them aside.
Begin phase 2:
Now you're ready to melt the brown sugar and butter until a boil is reached.
Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, for 5-6 minutes or until mixture is thickened and sugar is completely dissolved. It should be pretty thick, but thin enough to pour and spread on its own.
Pour this mixture over the crackers and make sure all are coated fairly evenly.
The third portion:
Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until the toffee becomes bubbly.
After removing the pan from the oven, let it sit for 3-5 minutes and begin to set up.
Sprinkle on the chips, let them soften and melt for about 5 minutes, and then spread them into an even layer.
You can add nuts, cracker crumbs, or whatever else floats your boat at this point.
Let cool and, if desired for expediting purposes, refrigerate until hardened.
Break into pieces the size of your choice and enjoy!

Microwave version, using the same ingredients:
Place crackers on a cookie sheet lined with foil. Microwave sugar and butter for 4 minutes. Whisk to blend. Pour over crackers and bake at 350ºF for 15 minutes and continue on with recipe above.

56 comments:

Foodycat said...

Oh god these look good! But for the record, I never thought I would read "margarine is acceptable" on this blog!

Rosa's Yummy Yums said...

Wow, that's great. Your toffee bars must taste so good. A divine treat!

Cheers,

Rosa

Barbara said...

Always fun to look back to see what readers like best. Often a surprise, but this time, no surprise at all. This looks fabulous. I must have missed it the first time around. Easy to make...definitely using dark chocolate when I try it!

shaz said...

Oooh. Glad you reposted this as I hadn't seen the original version. I know what everyone at hubby's work is getting for Christmas this year :)

vianney said...

Congrats!! I love when bloggers showcase what their readers love!!

Dana said...

So good! We also refer to it as crack. :P

Rose @ RoseBakes.com said...

I have a blog question... how in the world do you know which post is your most popular and how many hits it has?

Juliana said...

Toffee bars? I love it and I so wish I could have a piece of this...it look so GOOD!
Hope you are having a wonderful week Grace :)

scrambledhenfruit said...

I can definitely see why this is so popular. It is surely addictive. :)

Not Quite Nigella said...

Ooh Grace, this sounds like the best idea for a Christmas present! I've made something like this with pretzels but this would be quite different I think! :D

Carolyn Jung said...

LOL If it's that good, which I'm sure it is, it shouldn't be "Christmas Crack,'' it should be "Every Day Crack!'' ;)

Sharon Graves said...

So glad you reposted...or perhaps not. Will clearly not fit into any of my Christmas clothes if I eat these!

My Kitchen Stories said...

O lordy are you kiddin?.....no wonder it's been googled to hell. You'll have everyone addicted to crack

Joanne said...

Haha I have the same problem with my most popular post! Okay it's not really a problem...it just so much outshines all the others that they're getting a bit jealous. :P

I can definitely see why these are so well-loved!

Erica said...

I understand why these are so popular!They look amazing,Grace!

Beth said...

No wonder everyone wants to make this recipe. It looks amazing. I'll probably increase the number of views just by coming back every few days to daydream about it!

Pam said...

I have a feeling that I will be making this very soon! YUMMO!

lisa is cooking said...

Toffee is my all-time favorite holiday treat every invented! I've never tried a saltine, pretzel, or cookie base, but clearly this is something I need to investigate. Red pepper flakes on top sounds fantastic.

Enjoying the Epiphany said...

Yum! HI, I am your newest follower and was hoping that you'd stop on by my blog and follow me back!

www.enjoyingtheepiphany.com

Thanks,
Sarah

Dianne @ Sweet Journey Home said...

I love toffee, caramel and chocolate. These offer it all and are so yummy! I will have to try your recipe...thanks for sharing!

Sue/the view from great island said...

I love this Grace, and for some reason, I've never seen the post, I guess I'll be adding to that huge number of fans! I have a crazy runaway popular post like that I want to revisit. Great idea!

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Laura said...

This post cracked me up and made me eager for Christmas. :)

Have you seen the hour long special they are doing on the syfy chanel about Firefly?

I Wilkerson said...

I do a straight toffee without the saltines. This looks like an interesting (and delicious!) variation. Christmas is coming!

Lisa-Marie said...

Oh good God woman. Are you trying to kill us all with delciousness?! If yes, I reckon these would be a spectacular way to go :)

These are on The List.

WizzyTheStick said...

Well played most popular post, well played. It is almost 10:00pm at night and I am rustling through my panty for ingredients.

Angie's Recipes said...

These look dangerously tempting and delish, Grace. I would have probably finished the whole batch before putting them to the air-tight container ;-)

Faith said...

Oh boy, I have heard amazing things about this! I make a similar toffee concoction with salted pretzels instead of saltines...I'm definitely going to try this version! And I'm pinning now. ;)

Katerina said...

No wonder why they are so popular! They are absolutely perfect!

Blond Duck said...

I'm totally willing to be an addict.

Lynda said...

I have eaten this before, but never made it myself.........I must do better, but really Grace, I'll inhale the whole thing! Very dangerous (and yummy)recipe! :)

Tina Marie said...

I couldn't believe how easy these were... Or how delicious! I have to refrain from making them because they disappear so fast! Hey, that's what happens when they leave me home alone all day! ;) I am making them for Thanksgiving, just so all our guests have the total domestic goddess experience. Thanks, I owe you one!

Robin Sue said...

Love these! And yes you must use a silpat or specialty foil because eating foil is not good but kinda worth it;-)

christine key said...

Oh my yummy goodness!! Just got back from store with ingredients, minus specialty foil or silpat (?!?), but I soldier on in the pursuit of salty sweet goodness. Wish me luck folks!

christine key said...

Oh my yummy goodness!! Just got back from store with ingredients, minus specialty foil or silpat (?!?), but I soldier on in the pursuit of salty sweet goodness. Wish me luck folks!

vanillasugarblog said...

it's that time of year isn't it?
I need to start making my xmas crack for my clients.

Danielle Imstuffed said...

oh man...i haven't made this in YEARS!! love these things, way too much.

LeAnn said...

I seriously made these every.single.weekend last year! Easy and delicious! I'm starting up again for Thanksgiving and I can't wait!

Anonymous said...

I must be doing something wrong, the last time I tried, the butter separated from the sugar,,?

grace said...

@Anonymous: if you cook it long enough, that shouldn't happen! hmm. perhaps there was too much butter or too little sugar? if your measurements were right, i'd suggest simmering it a bit longer, maybe up to 8 minutes. give it a good stir occasionally too. i hope you try again and i hope it behaves properly!

Matt and Emily Foster said...

My crackers never floated to the middle...I still had them on the bottom, with some toffee leaking through. What on earth happened? I guess they taste the same, but they don't break as nicely and I have cracker crumbs everywhere. I simmered on the stove for 8 minutes, in the oven for 10-12, the toffee was bubbling. Anyone else experience this? When is it supposed to "sink"? Were my crackers too close together? Help!

grace said...

@Matt and Emily Foster: my suspicion is that the toffee cooked too much on the stove and got too stiff to flow easily between the crackers. try simmering the stuff for 6 minutes. i really hope that fixes things!

Cindy Sweat said...

I want to mail batches of these to family to enjoy on Christmas day. Has anyone waited long enough to see how long these are good for? :)

Kathryn Somers said...

I have made this twice in the last week and I think I'm doing something wrong. When I am cooking the sugar and butter on the stove for the 5-6 minutes, the sugar and butter break before the time is up. Then when I pour it onto the crackers, the butter soaks into the crackers leaving a brown sugar layer on top. I have a suspicion about the cause: I was concerned about the sugar scorching on the bottom of the pan so I stirred and stirred. So, to stir or no? What do you do?

Tonya Fullenkamp said...

First, I love your disclaimer :) Second, I can't wait to make these. I make toffee every year and it always takes about 3-4 tries, I never know what I do wrong because I do the same exact thing every time. I'm so excited about this I want to screem!!! Thank you!

grace said...

@Cindy Sweat: the longest mine have sat around in the fridge was a week, and they were still fine. the chocolate turns a little dull, but it's still delicious.

@Kathryn Somers: that is peculiar. i think it's definitely a good idea to stir occasionally so, as you said, the sugar won't scorch. my suggestions are a)make sure it's not boiling hard but just simmering, and b)make sure you have two PACKED cups of brown sugar. if it still happens, color me completely baffled. :(

E.M said...

The recipe says 1 cup of brown sugar, yet you told Kathryn 2 cups packed brown sugar. HELP

grace said...

@E.M.: whoops--you're right! i goofed because i've been making double batches lately. i should've said one cup--the recipe is correct as written!

TammyS said...

Made this last night. It is wonderful! Although my toffee was soft and grainy like a sugar baby! I think I should have simmered a while longer. But still taste delicious !

carrie said...

Can salted butter be used in place of unsalted butter?

mistydawn77 said...

I made this with my youngest son tonight. I subsituted ritz crackers for saltines and double chocolate frosting for the chips (because I couldn't find the ones I thought I had). Can't wait for them to cool! Thanks!

grace said...

@carrie: salted butter is fine!

Monica said...

Just found this recipe on Pinterest and perfect timing for last Oct. baking. So great to see the updates - that will help in preparation.

Anonymous said...

Im in the uk i dont have a clue what saltines are

grace said...

@Anonymous: sorry! saltines are just soda crackers! you can also use matzo or possibly water biscuits, though i'm not entirely sure what those are like.

Tom M said...

Foil is totally unnecessary,
also extra seasonal when made with white chocolate and Craisins