Bonfire toffee

Remember remember the 5th of November

Today in the UK it’s Bonfire night. If you have never heard of it, here is a quick history lesson. In 1605, thirteen young men planned to blow up the Houses of Parliament. Among them was Guy Fawkes, Britain’s most notorious traitor. On the very night that the Gunpowder Plot was foiled, on November 5th, 1605, bonfires were set alight to celebrate the safety of the King. Since then, November 5th has become known as Bonfire Night. The event is commemorated every year with fireworks and burning effigies of Guy Fawkes on a bonfire.

Treacle Toffee

In addition, bonfire night is accompanied by warning foods like chilli and hotpots, toffee apples and my favourite bonfire toffee. So, in Dubai we may not have bonfires, fireworks and ‘penny for the guy’ but now we do have bonfire toffee and it.s gorgeous.

What you will need

  • oil or butter, for greasing
  • 450g dark brown sugar
  • 125ml hot water
  • ¼ tsp cream of tartar
  • 115g black treacle
  • 115g golden syrup

How to make bonfire toffee

I used this recipe from the BBC

  1. Line the base and sides of an A4 sized tin with non-stick parchment and then grease it really well.
  2. Put the sugar and hot water in a heavy bottomed pan and heat gently until the sugar is dissolved, do not stir the mixture at any point instead tilt the pan if you need to move it around.
  3. Weigh out your remaining ingredients, if you put them in a really well greased jug they will be much easier to pour out. Once the sugar has dissolved add all the ingredients and pop the sugar thermometer in, you can use the thermometer to give it a quick swirl but try not to mix it too much.
  4. Bring to the boil and boil until you reach soft crack on your thermometer (270/140C) This may take up to 30 minutes, be patient and do not leave the pan unattended as it can change quickly. As soon as it reaches the temp, tip it into your tin and leave it to cool.
    Soft crack: You don’t have to use a thermometer for this, I didn’t, you can test a soft crack by dropping a bit of the toffee into cool water, remove the toffee from the water and pull it apart between your fingers. Soft-crack stage has been reached when the syrup forms firm but pliable threads.
  5. Once cool remove it from the tin a break up with a toffee hammer or rolling pin. Store in an airtight tin or wrap up in boxes or cellophane bags to give as gift.

I didn’t manage to reach soft crack stage the first time I made, I know because it was too sticky and melted immediately in the mouth, so, I put it all back in the pan and reheated it, the second time it was perfect.

This toffee takes me back to being a child as my Mum used to make it, my brother and I were so impatient waiting for it to set. I’m going to have to give some of this away or I’ll eat all 500g of it, its simply delicious.


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