Sunday, December 21, 2008

Brittle heaven.

I have learned a new candy trick:  I can make brittle!  I got the notion from this feature on The Daily Beast, a little Thanksgiving panoply of not-so-traditional takes on the classic components. Nigella Lawson offered the idea of pumpkinseed brittle, which I made earlier this week, and which is every bit as beautiful and delicious as advertised.

It is so not hard at all.  The only thing you have to do is pay attention when the sugar is boiling away, because when it decides to caramelize, it does so very very quickly, so you don't want to be off removing dog hair from your couch or ironing hankies or polishing your silver (only joking about the last two!  I have dog hair but hardly any hankies and no silver) when that happens.  But so long as you're riveted to the candy miracle happening on your stove, you are going to have brittle, and you will feel like a genius.

This experience has led me to believe that I can make brittle out of anything, a belief that underwrote yesterday's almond brittle, also attractive and delicious.  It reminds me of something my son-in-law once said with respect to his Fry-Baby deep fat fryer:  "You could deep fry a roll of quarters and it would come out full of golden deliciousness."  I'm kind of feeling the same way about anything in brittle form:  paper clips?  potato chips?  Capture anything in hard-caramelized amber and it is transformed: gorgeous, tooth-wreckingly crunchy, irresistible.  By which I mean, at the moment I am finding it hard to resist seeing everything--okay, every nut--as a fantastic opportunity for brittle.    

3 comments:

lis said...

cooking anything carmel-like scares the bejezus out of me, so I admire you. I think chips in brittle would be amazing. you should try that.

Dr. Write said...

I am also in favor of potato chip brittle.

ann cannon said...

I. want. that. pumpkin. seed. brittle. now.

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