This is, sadly, my fourth and final post of the season for our little band of holiday cookie bakers, affectionately known as the Cookie Freaks. This week’s theme is: Quickies. These are treats you can make at the last minute for party favors, snacks, classroom parties, gifts in those pretty little cello gift bags, and so on.
Okay, so technically, Spiced Honey Pine Nut Brittle is not a cookie. But it is a sweet treat that you can throw together in a snap, and I promise that everyone will be impressed. Even if you’re kitchen-challenged. And you don’t even need to turn on the oven!
Let’s get moving – you don’t have the time!
Spiced Honey Pine Nut Brittle
(makes about 8-10 oz. of candy)
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup Honey Ridge Farms Spiced Honey
- Pinch of salt
- 1 Tbsp water
- 1 cup Frieda’s Pine Nuts
- 1 Tbs. butter
- 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda
Prepare a cookie sheet by lining it with a silicone baking mat, parchment paper, or by buttering the pan directly. You don’t have to butter the silicone mat. Another good reason to own one. Or more.
Put the sugar, spiced honey, salt, and water into a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan (about 2 quart size) on medium heat. Use a good quality non-stick pot, if you have one. You’ll thank me later. Stir with a wooden or silicone spoon (don’t use metal utensils) until the mixture is smooth and all the ingredients are well incorporated. Stir in the pine nuts.
Cook, stirring often, until the mixture turns a golden, caramel color and the temperature on an instant read thermometer or candy thermometer reaches 300º F. This should take about 5 to 10 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the butter. When the butter has melted and is incorporated completely, stir in the baking soda. The mixture will foam up after you stir in the baking soda, so don’t be alarmed! You’re actually adding tiny bubbles of carbon dioxide into the candy, which will make it easier to break up. Also, so you don’t break a tooth.
Pour the hot brittle onto your prepared baking pan and spread it out to an even thickness (about 1/8″). Once the hot brittle hits the cold pan, it will begin to set up, so work quickly. Don’t worry about making a nice rectangular shape. You won’t get one.
The brittle should be completely cool after about 15-20 minutes, after which you can break it up into pieces and serve. Or gift bag. Or store in a zip bag or airtight container. For awhile. It hasn’t lasted long enough around here to figure out its shelf-life.
Don’t bother toasting the pine nuts first. They’ll take on that glorious golden color as they cook in the “syrup”.
Seriously. Invest in a couple of good silicone baking mats. They might look pricey upfront, but you can throw ’em in the dishwasher, and they’ll last you for years and years for literally thousands of uses. Unless you do something stupid. Like put one under the broiler, like I did that one time. *Cough!*
You can double or even triple this recipe, according to how much you need.
Try this with other seeds and nuts, too, like sesame seeds, cashews pieces, almond pieces – whatever you like. Ooo! Pistachios!
Thank you for stopping by. You’ll love this brittle – both making it and eating it – and people who receive it will love you, too!
Please visit the rest of the Cookie Freaks crew and see what delights they’ve made up for you, this week!
Diana Cannone, To Di for Bakery, http://todiforbakery.com/news/
Judy Chiappini, No Fear Entertaining, http://www.nofearentertaining.blogspot.com/
Mandee Racer Pogue, The Kitchen Wife, http://www.thekitchenwife.net/
Marye Audet-White, Restless Chipotle, http://www.restlesschipotle.com/
Sandy Smith, Eat Real, http://www.weeatreal.com/
I was sent the Spiced Honey from Honey Ridge Farms (currently on sale, 10% off! – check out their online store) and the Pine Nuts from Frieda’s Specialty Produce (ask your store’s produce manager), as part of packages from previous posts. This is not a sponsored post, but I love their products and find all sorts of different uses for them. All opinions, recipes, text, and photographs are my own and original to RJ Flamingo and her real-life alter-ego, and are copyrighted materials, not to be reproduced in any form without express permission from the author. Links contained in this post may be affiliate links to my Amazon store. If you start here and buy anything on Amazon, I get a small commission. This does not increase your price, but does help me pay my web host. And buy food. Thank you for your support!