Time moves in one direction, memory in another. ~ William Gibson
How much of our 18-year-old selves do we carry forward with us through 30 years?
At the time, the feelings loomed so large and you told yourself that you would never forget any of it. But you do, inevitably.
What matters are the larger themes that carry through as the threads we use to weave the story of who we are now. Today. Both past and present are unfixed – adaptable. Changing.
One thing that remains unchanged from those (suprisingly long ago) years is this recipe, clipped from some now unremembered source.
Unlike almost every other recipe in my cumbersome collection, this one not been tweaked or modified in any way.
I’ve been making these Chocolate Toffee Bars for Christmas for 30 years. Once you see how easy they are, you’ll want to make them, too.
All you have to do is:
1. Combine the flour and granulated sugar. Cut in 1/2 cup of the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
2. Press into the bottom of an ungreased 9×9″ baking pan. Bake the crust in a preheated 350 degree F oven for 15 minutes, or until just lightly browned. Do not overbake.
3. While the crust is baking, combine the brown sugar with the remaining butter in a saucepan. Heat until the butter and sugar are melted.
4. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. When the mixture has come to a full boil, reduce the heat and continue boiling for 1 minute. (The mixture should continue to bubble while you are stirring.)
5. Remove the crust from the oven and pour the toffee evenly over the baked crust.
6. Sprinkle chopped walnuts over toffee and return the pan to the oven. Bake for an additional 15 minutes.
6. Remove the pan from the oven. The toffee will be bubbled up around the walnuts.
7. Sprinkle the chocolate chips over the nuts as soon as the bars come out of the oven. Let the pan sit for 5-7 minutes to give the chocolate time to melt.
8. With a spatula, gently spread melted chocolate to cover the walnuts. Let bars cool completely before cutting.
- 1 cup / 250 ml all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup / 60 ml granulated sugar
- 1 cup / 250 ml butter, softened (divide in half - one for the crust and one for the topping)
- 3/4 cup / 375 ml firmly packed brown sugar
- 1-1/4 cup / 310 ml coarsely chopped walnuts
- 1 cup / 250 ml semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350 degree F.
In mixing bowl, combine flour and granulated sugar. Cut in 1/2 cup of the butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Press the mixture into the bottom of an ungreased 9x9" baking pan.
Bake the crust for 15 minutes or until very lightly browned. Do not overbake.
While the crust is baking, prepare the toffee.
Combine the remaining butter and brown sugar in medium saucepan. Heat over medium heat until the butter is completely melted.
Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring constantly. When it has come to a full boil, reduce the heat and cook for 1 minute while continuing to stir. The mixture should continue to bubble while you are stirring.
Pour the toffee evenly over the baked layer and sprinkle the chopped walnuts over.
Return to the oven and bake for an additional 15 minutes.
Remove from the oven and immediately sprinkle with the chocolate chips. Let the pan sit for 5-7 minutes until the chocolate has melted.
WIth a spatula, gently spread the melted chocolate to cover the nuts.
Let cool completely, then cut into 20 bars.
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