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In the Wilderness, Part II and Christmas Toffee Crunch

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It may seem odd to pair Christmas Toffee Crunch with a story titled “In the Wilderness.” I mean these candies look like and taste like the pinnacle of richness and pampering and elegance. And in one way they are, the perfect finishing touch to that Christmas party or at the end of a long Christmas Day–sit back and indulge yourself in this wonderful treat!

But in another way of thinking, these bars are down to earth simple and practical, easy to transport on that trip “in the wilderness” and a sure-fire energy boost while on a hike or skiing adventure. Heck, the ingredients and preparation are so basic you almost could make them out there in the wilderness–if you can figure out how to crank that campfire up to 400 degrees then refrigerate the result (O.K., maybe you can’t make them in the wilderness, but you gotta admit it’s an easy recipe!).

So this Christmas Toffee Crunch maybe isn’t such a bad match for “In the Wilderness.” Why not make a double batch–one for the Christmas party AND one for the cross-country ski trip the week after? This delicious candy bar will fill both roles perfectly. How many recipes can you say that about?

Too bad David and Jan didn’t have this on their trip–might’ve smoothed over the rough edges (and maybe placated those armed hicks that barged into their camp in the middle of the night).

  toffee crunch candy

Christmas Toffee Crunch

10 saltine crackers

1/4 cup unsalted butter

1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed

1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

toffee bits, sprinkles, and/or candies to top

toffee crunch

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spray a loaf pan with cooking spray. Lay saltine crackers in the pan, covering the bottom. (I had to break some of my crackers to cover the bottom.) Set pan aside.

In a small pot, add the butter and brown sugar. Heat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until it begins to boil. Once the mixture is boiling, do NOT stir it, and let it boil for 3 minutes. Pour this mixture over the saltine crackers. Place pan in oven and bake for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and sprinkle the semisweet chocolate chips over top of the toffee mixture. Put the pan back in the oven for a minute to soften the chocolate chips. Remove the pan from the oven for the final time. With a knife or spatula, spread the melted chocolate chips to completely cover the toffee. Sprinkle toffee bits, sprinkles, or candy over top of the chocolate.

Let the bars cool for about 30  minutes at room temperature before putting it in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours. Once the bars are set, cut or break the bars into pieces. Store at room temperature or in the refrigerator for a week.

bite of christmas toffee crunch

{Adapted from The Food Network}

Click below to listen to or read Part II of “In the Wilderness”!

In the Wilderness, Part II, audio © Jeffrey Anderson

In the Wilderness, Part II, text © Jeffrey Anderson


About Elaine

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