Toasted Sesame, Cashew + Chili Brittle


 Prep Time : 15 Minutes | Cook Time : 20 Minutes | Total Time : 1 hour | Difficulty : Moderate

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You guys! No really you guys have to try this brittle. It is the. best. candy. I have ever made. I’m a bit nuts for sweet/savoury crossovers at the moment and this is sooo good. Also for reference, every pun you come across on this blog is intentional. That’s how I roll. Before we begin, I’m going to go on a bit about one of me new favourite things. Gochugaru is a Korean chili powder that is super bright and fresh and has tonnes of fruity flavour and less heat than a traditional chili powder. You should go straight to the Asian supermarket and get some right now. It is perfect in this brittle and sprinkled on or in almost everything else. It is highly recommended on peanut butter toast..

{Shameless self promotion follows}

On my trip to Melbourne I had the amazing privilege to be interviewed by Rachel Luck of the Happiness Concierge. Rachel is an absolute rock star at helping people achieve their goals and dreams, and you can read the lovely things she wrote about me here. You know, if you haven’t caught any of my social media spamming of it this past week… I also have to give the biggest shout out to Bree Dunbar who took the amazing photos for the piece. She specialises in female-led projects and is a total sweetheart. And her instagram is so so fab.

Now I did promise you all some candy right?

Making candy requires more precision than baking in general. I must insist that you measure out the ingredients before you start so that you can add them at the right time without any drama. Nobody likes drama. Measure the sugar, golden syrup, water and butter into a heavy-bottomed medium saucepan.

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Toast the sesame seeds by heating them gently in a dry frying pan. Watch them very carefully so they don’t burn. As soon as they start to colour tip them out into a bowl. Roughly chop the cashews and put to the side in the bowl with the sesame seeds.

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Measure the spices and baking soda and mix together into a small bowl. Line a rimmed baking sheet with baking paper or a silicone baking sheet and set aside.

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Now you can turn on the stove. Melt the ingredients in the saucepan together over a medium-low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Increase the heat and bring the mixture to a simmer. Adjust the heat down to maintain a steady simmer and attach a candy thermometer to the side of the pan.

Cook until the toffee reaches the soft crack stage at 140C (284F). It will take around 15 minutes but keep a close eye on it. Sugar can go from perfect to overdone super fast. Remove the pan from the heat and add the spices and baking soda. Stir quickly and thoroughly to distribute everything evenly. It will foam up a lot but start to subside fairly quickly. While it’s still a bit frothy add the cashews and stir a couple of times. Try not to stir it too much or it can seize a bit and have a dry crumbly texture.

Tip the brittle out onto the prepared baking sheet and spread out as best you can with a spatula. If you want it to be very even you can press a sheet of baking paper down on top of it – make sure you protect your hand with a kitchen towel.

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Let it cool completely before breaking up into shards.

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I found this brittle to be utterly addictive. It hit’s you with sharp sweetness and fragrant sesame, then creaminess from the cashews and lastly a warm burst of chili heat at the end. I recommend finding friends to share this with fairly quickly

Toasted Sesame, Cashew + Chili Brittle


Prep Time : 15 mins | Cook Time : 20 mins | Total Time : 1 hour | Difficulty : Moderate | Makes : More that you should eat yourself

Utterly addictive brittle toffee – sweet, nutty and spicy all at once.

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon (250 grams) sugar
  • 1/4 cup (75 grams) golden syrup
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 3 1/2 tablespoons (50 grams) butter
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon gochugaru (korean chili flakes)
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried coriander (cilantro) leaves
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 cup (150 grams) roasted unsalted cashews

– If using metric cups, reduce volume measures by 1 tablespoon for every cup of dry or liquid ingredients – 

Equipment:

  • Heavy-bottomed medium saucepan
  • Candy thermometer
  • Rimmed baking sheet lined with baking paper or a silicone baking mat

Directions:

Making candy requires more precision than baking in general. I must insist that you measure out the ingredients before you start so that you can add them at the right time without any drama. Nobody likes drama. Measure the sugar, golden syrup, water and butter into a heavy-bottomed medium saucepan.

Toast the sesame seeds by heating them gently in a dry frying pan. Watch them very carefully so they don’t burn. As soon as they start to colour tip them out into a bowl. Roughly chop the cashews and put to the side in the bowl with the sesame seeds.

Measure the spices and baking soda and mix together into a small bowl. Line a rimmed baking sheet with baking paper or a silicone baking sheet and set aside.

Now you can turn on the stove. Melt the ingredients in the saucepan together over a medium-low heat until the sugar is dissolved. Increase the heat and bring the mixture to a simmer. Adjust the heat down to maintain a steady simmer and attach a candy thermometer to the side of the pan.

Cook until the toffee reaches the soft crack stage at 140C (284F). It will take around 15 minutes but keep a close eye on it. Sugar can go from perfect to overdone super fast. Remove the pan from the heat and add the spices and baking soda. Stir quickly and thoroughly to distribute everything evenly. It will foam up a lot but start to subside fairly quickly. While it’s still a bit frothy add the cashews and stir a couple of times. Try not to stir it too much or it can seize a bit and have a dry crumbly texture.

Tip the brittle out onto the prepared baking sheet and spread out as best you can with a spatula. If you want it to be very even you can press a sheet of baking paper down on top of it – make sure you protect your hand with a kitchen towel. Let it cool completely before breaking up into shards.

Cook’s Notes:

  • Toasting the sesame seeds is essential – it really makes them fragrant and flavourful
  • Look for the dry/oven roasted cashews – they should look dry rather than oily when you buy them
  • If you can’t find Gochugaru, use a scant 1/4 teaspoon of regular chili flakes

 – Storage Notes – 

Adapted from Sugar and Spice.

© 2016 The Winsome Baker. All images & content are copyright protected. Please do not use my images without prior permission. If you want to republish this recipe, please re-write the recipe in your own words, or link back to this post for the recipe.

3 thoughts on “Toasted Sesame, Cashew + Chili Brittle

    • Thanks Dave! I was not kidding when I said I’ve been putting the gochugaru on everything – started with preserved lemons and now it’s gotten out of hand…

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