October is finally here and that means pumpkin spice everything and eating all the candy you want! Don’t settle for ordinary candy from the store this year; liven up your Halloween month with homemade candies and treats.
Don’t be scared of caramelizing sugar on your own. A candy thermometer isn’t absolutely essential, but it can certainly help avoid accidents in the kitchen and burnt sugar. Follow the instructions below and you’re guaranteed to be making your own dulce de leche and brittles in no time!
If you’re not a pumpkin seed fan, feel free to substitute any kind of nut you want or try a variety for a high-protein treat.
Pumpkin Seed Brittle
— 1 cup sugar
— 1/2 cup water
— 1/8 tsp salt
— 3/4 cup raw (hulled) pumpkin seeds
Put a 24- by 12-inch sheet of parchment on a work surface and anchor corners with pieces of tape. Have another sheet the same size standing by.
Bring sugar, water, and sea salt to a boil in a 2-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Cook mixture, without stirring, washing down any sugar crystals from side of pan with a pastry brush dipped in cold water for about 10-12 minutes until it reaches soft-ball stage (about 238°F on a candy thermometer).
Remove from heat and stir in seeds with a wooden spoon, then continue stirring until syrup crystallizes, about 3 to 4 minutes.
Return pan to moderate heat and cook, stirring constantly, until sugar melts completely (sugar will continue to dry and become grainy before melting) and turns a deep caramel color, 4 to 5 minutes more (seeds will be toasted).
Carefully pour brittle on to parchment paper. Cover with another sheet of paper and, with a rolling pin, flatten out brittle until it becomes a thin sheet.
Remove top sheet of parchment and immediately cut brittle into pieces with a heavy knife or pizza wheel. Cool completely, then peel paper from bottom. (Alternately, break brittle into jagged pieces once cool.)
Makes a great gift for any occasion or as a sweet treat all for yourself! Feature it at your Halloween Party!
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