Almond Roca for Purim and Valentine's Day
Psssst! Can I interest you in some crack? I made a ton of different candies so far, but my favorite is this most awesome bit of heaven called Almond Roca, which I found at Mel's Kitchen Cafe. Light and crunchy. Totally drool-worthy. I'm gaining weight just thinking about this stuff.
When I first stumbled over this recipe, I thought it very similar to chocolate-coated English toffee, and wasn't sure what the difference was. Mel never mentioned its origin, so I just thought it was a nifty name and didn't bother look it up. Until now. Turns out that Almond Roca is a brand name and I had never heard of it. So embarassing *blush*.
Almond Roca is a little more difficult to make than yesterday's Almond Gedillas, because you need a thermometer to assure success every time. Undercook and you'll have a soft mess. Overcook and you'll need jaws of steel to enjoy these babies.
The only thing I changed was to sprinkle chopped almonds over the melted chocolate instead of sliced, because I didn't have sliced on hand. Turns out that the Almond Roca brand uses ground almonds. So now you have 3 ways of making
Very Slightly Adapted from: Mel's Kitchen Cafe
Yield: Not nearly enough as far as I'm concerned
Cooking spray (if using)
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1/4 tsp. table salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1 (6 oz.) package slivered almonds
1 (8 oz.) package semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped almonds
Line a large rimmed baking sheet with a silicone baking sheet or with aluminum foil. If using foil, evenly coat with cooking spray. Set aside.
Heat a small saute pan over medium-high heat. Add slivered almonds. Heat, stirring frequently, until almonds are golden brown. Immediately remove from heat; transfer almonds to a small bowl (so prevent further browning) and set aside.
|Digital thermometer. Not made for candy but gets job done.|
Continue to boil, stirring occasionally in the center of the saucepan (to avoid sugar crystallizing on pan sides) until temperature reaches 300F with a candy thermometer.
Remove from heat; stir in the slivered almonds. Immediately pour almond mixture onto the prepared baking sheet placed on heatproof surface.
Quickly spread mixture with wooden spoon or heatproof spatula into a thin, even layer.
Sprinkle chocolate chips over the hot layer. Let chips sit for 2-3 minutes, then spread melted chocolate evenly to the edges. Immediately sprinkle chopped almonds over the chocolate. Let Roca cool completely.
Break Roca into pieces about 2-inches in length. Don't worry if the pieces aren't even ... size doesn't matter here. Unless you have to share.