Tuesday, July 04, 2006

Cashew Brittle

I so enjoyed these candies that I told myself that they would be regulars in my kitchen. But, alas, these treats couldn't even last for 2 days in the fridge; they become sweaty and lose a bit of their character, relying entirely on the nuts to provide that most wanted crunch. I freezed some, but as soon as I pulled them out, they almost deliquesced into non-existence.
I guess they're meant for immediate enjoyment then.
I use these treats with almost anything. They provide a delicate crunch to mousses, ice creams and icings. I especially love layers and layers of them under sweetn succulent mangoes and fresh cream. Flambed bananas are just as wonderful, casting a smoky, darker component against the light cream. The nuts I used are chopped cashews, but I imagined walnuts or pecans would be just as lovely. They can be shaped into logs or cups, provided you're quick enough with handling them and you don't mind heat burns every now and then. They may be coated with chocolate and rolled into more nuts or roasted desiccated coconut. They may be crushed and used as you would pralines. The possibilities are endless and each as great as the next...assuring you they'll be gone in two days!
Cashew Brittle
50g butter, melted
50g granulated sugar
50g corn syrup
35g all purpose flour
40g chopped cashew
1. Mix everything into one smooth paste. Add a teaspoon of liquor if desired.
2. Drop by teaspoonfuls on a silpat, keep them well apart as they will spread greatly.
3. Bake in a 350F oven, check doneness by keeping an eye all throughout baking time. When the bubbles have subsided and the candies become golden, remove them from the oven and quickly shape as needed.
In the event that they become hard and brittle before you're done shaping them, place them back in the oven until they're just about pliable again.

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