Homemade Hazelnut Brittle is a quick and easy treat that is sure to satisfy any sweet tooth craving, especially during the holidays.
Fortunately for me, and the recipients of my boiling sugar concoctions, I tackled my fear last year when I made my salted vanilla bean caramels and haven't looked back.
I wasn't going to be satisfied with plain old peanut brittle. I was going to step up my game and make cashew brittle, but then I thought "I'm in Oregon and we are the #1 producers of hazelnuts, so it should be hazelnut brittle". The fact that I had a bag of raw hazelnuts that I bought at the farmers market that were just begging to be roasted combined with the fact that I didn't have to go to the store to buy cashews also played into that decision a wee bit too.
I'm happy to say that this brittle turned out so rich and buttery and sweet. Its the kind of brittle that cements your molars together - and that's a very good thing. I wasn't sure if I should add the hazelnuts in whole or if I should break them apart. I opted for whole and I'm so glad I did for two reasons: First, I think they look really cool and second, they break apart perfectly if they happen to be on a seam where you break the brittle. And may I add... if you've never broken up a sheet of homemade brittle, it just may end up being one of your most favorite things you do in your life!
- 2 cups sugar
- ½ cup water
- ½ cup unsalted butter
- ⅓ cup light corn syrup
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 8 ounces roasted hazelnuts (skins removed)
- Fleur de sel or crushed Maldon sea salt
- Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a large saucepan, combine the sugar, water, butter and corn syrup and bring to a boil. Cook over medium high heat, stirring occasionally, until the caramel is light brown and reaches 300° F on a candy thermometer, about 10 minutes. Note that around 250° F the mixture will start to thicken.
- Remove from the heat and carefully stir in the baking soda.
- Stir in the nuts, then immediately scrape the brittle onto lined baking sheet. Spread the brittle into a thin, even layer. Work fast - it will set quickly. Sprinkle with salt.
- After the brittle cools for at least 30 minutes, you can break it into large chunks.
- Stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 1 month.
recipe adapted from Food & Wine