Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Home made "butterfinger-type" candy bars!

omg. I heard that approximately 8 times when I shared these treats today. And I agree, if I do
say so myself. These are SO GOOD. Don't know what exactly inspired me to try this, other than that the croissants went so well and I know in my heart of hearts that the process of tempering chocolate is one I have to master. So, what better excuse? The process of cooking the sugar and corn syrup is pretty easy, though I did turn away from the sugar for a minute and cooked it way past the recommended 310 degrees - it was probably at 330 or 340 - starting to really color up as caramel. But the peanut butter stirred in saved it. The funniest thing about this recipe is it says it makes 96 pieces - ha ha ha! Not even close. Maybe 3 dozen.

Then there's the issue with tempering the chocolate. I DON'T KNOW what I do wrong, because it's either too hot or too cool but anyway it blooms on me - I'll keep at it. The chocolate coating is a mixture of dark and milk chocolate (sssshhhhh- I think that might be the secret ingredient!) Anyway, it's about perfect - not too sweet, not too bitter.

Here's one that came out very nicely though! And the macro function on the camera is working too!

Recipe to come later tonight.

Here is the recipe – I actually cooked the sugar syrup to something slightly higher than the recommended temp – not sure how hot because when I saw that the temp was way up I yelped and pulled it off the stove quickly, then tried to get the candy thermometer out of the syrup, then dropped part of the thermometer into the syrup, then had to restrain myself from fishing it out with my fingers (350 degrees – it takes the skin off!). So, I did not get a 100% accurate reading on how hot it actually got.

Do make sure not to undercook the syrup – it needs to be at least 310 – and you can safely go to 320 or 330 just to make sure it is firm enough. The link below is a pretty good reference.

Also, in the second paragraph of the recipe there is some nonsense about washing down the sides of the pan with a pastry brush. I see this in every recipe that involves cooking sugar and I personally ignore it – it’s never been an issue and the whole process seems like too much work to me.


Candy Bars
(Yields about 96 miniature candy bars)
1/3 cup light corn syrup
1/3 cup water
1 cup granulated sugar
1 cup peanut butter
Spray Vegetable Oil (Pam, etc.) for keeping the knife lubricated in scoring
1 Pound of Tempered Semi-Sweet Chocolate for dipping

Greasing a 12-by-17-inch jelly roll pan (with 1-inch sides) with safflower, vegetable or canola oil. Place the pan into a slightly warm oven to warm the pan while making the candy. (Don’t allow the pan to become hot, only barely warm to give you more time to spread and score the candy later.)
In a heavy 2-quart saucepan, combine the corn syrup and water, stirring well to combine. Place over medium-low heat and add the sugar. Cook the mixture, stirring constantly, until it is clear and then stirring often until it reaches a full boil. Clip on your calibrated candy thermometer, raise the heat to medium-high and continue to cook – without stirring – until the mixture reaches 310 degrees (F). During this cooking period, should sugar crystals form above the boiling line, carefully wipe away using a damp pastry brush, but be careful not to touch the boiling mixture. Rinse the pastry brush well – and make certain to blot-dry the brush well – between each swipe.
Remove your pan from the warming oven and place on your work surface.
Remove the candy from heat and add the peanut butter, stirring to blend completely using a clean wooden spoon. Working quickly, pour the mixture onto your well-greased jelly roll pan, and spread as evenly as possible. Score the mass with an oiled, heavy chef’s knife into 1-inch by 2-inch pieces, cutting at least half way through the candy. (The more quickly you do this, the easier and deeper your scoring will be.) It is helpful to spray the knife with cooking oil occasionally to aide the knife in scoring.
Allow the scored mixture to cool at room temperature. When cool and hard, break them into pieces.
Place the cut candies into the refrigerator while you temper your dipping chocolate and allow to chill for 15 to 30 minutes. Remove the candies from the fridge and dip each piece into the chocolate, then place on parchment paper to allow the chocolate to harden completely (About 3 hours).
Store on waxed-paper sheets in an airtight container for up to two weeks (again - ha ha ha - mine lasted exactly 18 hours, including overnight!)


Kim said...

Hi Lisa- Absolutely wonderful! Glad you are on a chocolate thing, it looks worth it. I am still working on tempering chocolate, tricky stuff. As for Scout, they do have doggie rain coats that come in handy as my Scout loves wearing his when it is rainy and windy. Perfect for your neck of the woods. Looking forward to the recipe.

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The recipe looks good, and we hope to try it out soon - will share our results.

Kyle said...

Hi Lisa. I have been using your recipe for years now and it wasn't until my cloud-based recipe organizer unexpectedly shut down their servers (lesson learned, back up your recipes) and have to look for your recipe again that I realized that your blog has almost disappeared. I could NOT find it! Despite blogger being a Google company, they buried your recipe so deep it was non-existent. I even included the name of your blog in my search! The recipe company (just as unexpectedly) powered up their database again and I was able to retrieve your URL again. I don't know what you are doing with your life now, but I really appreciate the effort you took making your blog between 2007 and 2010.