A brittle recipe is usually concerned with the preparation of food items which break easily when put into the mouth. The brittle food is also rather hard in consistency and cannot be chewed over a long period of time. Brittle recipes generally include a number of confections particularly those that have nuts or bits of candy embedded within them.
Pecans, almonds, peanuts, walnuts as well as cashew nuts are released in the mouth once the confection prepared according to a brittle recipe breaks. The flavors of the brittle food items are varied while the feel of the brittle recipes remain the same. The brittle food items make excellent gifts and are often exchanged during the festive occasions of Christmas and Thanksgiving.
Each part of the world has its own traditional brittle recipe with the indigenous ingredients typical to the region being used to prepare the brittle food products. The commonest brittle recipe depicts the cooking procedure for a hard candy encrusted with peanuts. A mixture of sugar and water is heated to a very high temperature of around 300F which is known as the hard crack temperature. Peanuts are then added to the caramelized sugar and the hot mixture poured into a flat granite or marble slab for cooling. Some amount of peanut butter or any other form of oil or butter is added occasionally as well. The resulting hot candy prepared according to the conventional brittle recipes is occasionally leveled with the help of a trowel in order to achieve uniform thickness. The candy can be broken into smaller pieces by hand after it attains room temperature. Popular Brittle Recipes Candies prepared according to the brittle recipe are popular all across the globe.
Some of the most famous concoctions made by following the traditional brittle recipes are:-
• Toffee- This particular brittle food is immensely popular all over the world. It is prepared by caramelizing sugar or molasses together with butter. A small amount of flour is added to the brittle recipe mixture at times too. Nuts and raisins are included within the toffee mixture on occasions too and the hard toffee is broken off into small pieces on cooling. The English toffee is an ideal example of a confection prepared according to the brittle recipe.
• Peppermint Brittle- Peppermint crushed into a measure of melted white chocolate and heated to the hard crack point is the brittle recipe behind this delightful candy. It can be broken into chunks after the candy cools off.
• Brittle Meringue Bones- Egg whites, cream of Tartar, vanilla along with salt and sugar are baked and piped into bone like shapes which form hard and brittle sweets that can be preserved over a long period of time.
• Microwave Peanut Brittle- This particular brittle recipe has stood the test of time and is eaten in almost all countries of the world. However, the modern method of preparing the hard candy by utilizing a microwave oven is both time saving and easy.
• Pralines- The brittle recipe for making pralines differs from continent to continent with the European version being any kind of nut, usually hazelnut or almond being covered with a hard sugar coating. The American version contains butter and is similar to a fudge which cannot really be defined as a brittle.