Here we go, new year new recipe! I will not go through any ‘good intention list’ as we are already 9 days after new year’s eve and probably I am already late 😉 I have an aim for this 2014, though: to enjoy every day of it, without over analyzing, regretting or brooding over anything. 2013 taught me it ain’t worth it 🙂
So, back to my kitchen experiments, this time I tried to make an Italian traditional treat: Croccante. This word means ‘crunchy/crispy’ and self explains the main characteristic of this sweet! It is quite easy to make, but you have to pay attention while making the caramel…if it accidentally turns too brown (read burns!) the taste of your Croccante will be bitter. You can use almonds, hazelnuts or any other kind of nut you have. Either way, this crispy, sticky, crunchy sweetness will be the perfect treat when you don’t have time for a whole piece of cake!
– 2 cups hazelnuts (roasted)
– 1,5 cup almonds (roasted)
– 4,5 tbs honey
– 2/3 cup caster sugar
– lemon (optional)
- Pour sugar and honey into a saucepan and let melt over low heat, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon.
- Sugar will melt completely up to become a beautiful blonde color: be careful it does not become dark. Meanwhile, coarsely chop almonds and hazelnuts.
- When sugar is ready, turn off the heat, and toss nuts into the saucepan, stirring continuously till they are well mixed .
- Immediately pour the mixture onto an oiled marble slab, or on a sheet of parchment paper placed on a baking sheet.
- Level the mixture well to give the desired thickness (I usually make it very thin, like no more than 0,25 inches) using a greased spatula or knife. If you life the aroma, you can press it down with a lemon cut in a half so that will unleash all its flavor.
- Let cool a few minutes and before it solidifies completely cut it into strips or bars with a large knife. Serve it after few hours or when it is completely cold