Dear Cook’s Notebook: Years ago a friend gave me an easy recipe for Almond Roca, which I have since lost in a move.
All you had to do was butter a cookie sheet, spread almonds on it and after cooking the caramel mixture, pour it over the nuts, then put Hershey bars or chocolate chips on top and spread when melted and refrigerate. Then you just broke it up.
Do you have a good easy recipe? – Jerrine Brendmoen, Spokane
Dear Jerrine: I couldn’t find a recipe identical to the one you described, but these two recipes are easy and delicious. The first one, which was first published in this column in 1999, can be made in the microwave.
The second recipe is for the stovetop. A candy thermometer will come in handy if you have one.
Microwave Almond Roca
1 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup butter
3 ounces slivered almonds
3 Hershey bars, or 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
Combine brown sugar and butter in a 4-cup microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on high power for 1 minute. Take out and stir until well-blended. Return to the microwave and cook on high for 4 more minutes.
Add 3/4 of the almonds. Stir well. Return to the microwave for 1 1/2 minutes. Take out and quickly pour onto the foil, spreading to desired thickness. Break candy bar into pieces and sprinkle over mixture. Let melt and then lightly spread. Top with remaining almonds.
Cool and break into pieces.
Yield: About 1 pound. 12 to 15 pieces
Approximate nutrition per serving, based on 15: 216 calories, 14 grams fat (7.5 grams saturated, 60 percent fat calories), 2 grams protein, 21 grams carbohydrate, 27 milligrams cholesterol, 1 gram dietary fiber, 107 milligrams sodium.
Candy Sale Almond Roca
Adapted from recipezaar.com
2 cups sugar
2 cups butter
1/3 cup water
2 cups almonds
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
Place almonds on a cookie sheet and lightly toast in a 325-degree oven. Cool nuts, then chop and spread over the bottom of a large cookie sheet that has been lightly buttered or sprayed with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
Combine sugar, butter and water in a large sauce pan. Cook until it is the color of a brown paper bag (276 degrees on a candy thermometer), stirring constantly with a wooden spoon.
Remove from heat and quickly pour over the almonds and spread until evenly distributed.
Sprinkle chocolate chips over the top and let it sit for 1 minute. Lightly spread melted chocolate over the candy.
Cool and break into pieces.
Store in an air-tight container; will keep in a cool place for 1 to 2 months.
Yield: 24 (2-ounce) servings
Approximate nutrition per 2-ounce serving: 304 calories, 24 grams fat (11 grams saturated, 67 percent fat calories), 3 grams protein, 23 grams carbohydrate, 41 milligrams cholesterol, 2 grams dietary fiber, 157 milligrams sodium.