TRB to the Rescue: Nutty Over Brittle

Posted by & filed under TRB to the Rescue.

As holiday cookie baking draws nearer, TRB has been steadfastly focused on gathering recipes to share with you. However, an emergency request from a faithful reader with a nut brittle disaster just made its way to TRB.

Now, nut brittle falls into the candy category, which, admittedly, is not a TRB specialty, but not being one to back away from a “sweet” challenge, here goes nothing…

“Hello TRB,

I just made a batch of cashew, pecan, macadamia and coconut brittle. Everything was going smoothly until, for some dumb reason, I decided to add a little more baking soda than usual. I was hoping to make the brittle a little more porous and crackly, but the entire batch foamed into a monstrosity.

I really need your help. Is there a way to salvage these costly products? Putting it in the oven and heating? Adding it to a larger new batch? Can it be saved?

– Torrent”

Well, Torrent, as stated above, TRB isn’t a candy-maker, so some research was required in order to provide a tip for this frothy mess.

From various Web sites, TRB was able to gather that a few things probably went wrong in this process from the get-go:

  • Did you use a candy thermometer?
  • Did your recipe call for baking soda or did you just decide to add it?
  • An oven is generally not used in making brittle — did you put your mixture in?

It appears there’s more than one way to crack a nut brittle (sorry, just couldn’t resist!). Most recipes, which — from reader feedback, anyway — seem to turn out just right, don’t call for the addition of baking soda. What’s more, it’s absolutely critical to use a candy thermometer when making the initial mixture to ensure that your brittle will achieve the “soft crack” state.

So, unfortunately, Torrent, it would seem that your recipe cannot be saved — an unusual and disappointing response from TRB, we know!! But all is not lost. Here is a recipe that earned the praise of brittle makers, which you may want to try next time:

Mixed Nut Brittle

Please let us know how it turns out!

Did you find this tip helpful? Post a comment.

2 Responses to “TRB to the Rescue: Nutty Over Brittle”

  1. Anonymous

    I made almond brittle this morning – 1 cup sugar, 1 cup butter 3 Tablespoons water – cook till crack ( about 10 min) + add 1 Cup toasted slivered almonds – It didn’t harden so I put it all back into the pot along with 2 Tablespoons water and melted everything on low heat – I then turned the heat up to med + cooked + stirred constantly until crack was reached – it worked – I saved the batch


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