White Chocolate Covered Caramelized Matzoh

Just a little reminder that caramelized matzoh is delicious and easy to make.  I experimented with toppings this time around, and instead of my go-to favorite toppings of semi-sweet chocolate and smoked almonds, I made a white chocolate version topped with chocolate sprinkles and flaked sea salt.  Initially I worried that the white chocolate version would  be cloyingly sweet, but all works well together (especially with sea salt sprinkled on top).  This time I used slightly salted matzoh (instead of unsalted).  You can find the recipe here.

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Matzo-Almond Croccante – Matzoh Madness #2

It’s Matzoh Madness in my kitchen, but probably not in the typical way.  It’s becoming apparent to me that I may have bit off more than I could chew in terms of my ability to make good use of my recent purchase of a five pound superpack of matzoh.  After making my first two batches of matzoh-inspired treats (Chocolate-Covered Caramelized Matzoh Crunch) and realizing that I had only used up half of one package of matzoh, I decided to try another variation of matzoh candy.  These Matzo-Almond Croccante are more toffee/brittle like than the Chocolate-Covered Caramelized Matzoh Crunch, and everything is heated over the stovetop.  The caramel is very firm (like a brittle) and extra sweet as it’s made from white sugar and honey, and the matzoh isn’t baked, so you get a greater contrast of textures and flavors.  You may be tempted to leave out the sprinkle of sea salt and cayenne pepper on top of everything, but the heat from the cayenne provides an unexpected twist to the sweetness.  You can also customize your toppings.  My second batch was made with chopped pecans.

Mazoh is slathered with a toffee caramel (made from white sugar and honey), sprinkled with toasted sliced almonds, drizzled with dark chocolate, and dusted with Maldon sea salt flakes and cayenne pepper to create a sweet, salty, nutty, rich, and spicy package.

Matzo-Almond Croccante- Bon Appetit  2

If you look closely, you can see all the different ingredients in this close up.Matzo-Almond Croccante- Bon Appetit  5

Even after making my first batch, I still had a few sheets of matzoh left in my first 1-pound box, so I made a second batch with chopped pecans.

Matzo-Almond Croccante- Bon Appetit Pecans 2

Matzo-Almond Croccante

(From Bon Appetit)
Makes enough to fill an 18×13″ half sheet pan

Ingredients

Nonstick vegetable oil spray
5 sheets matzoh (or enough to fit a pan without overlapping or leaving gaps)
1 3/4 cups sugar
3/4 cup butter
1/4 cup honey
1/4 cup water
1/3 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted
5 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate (do not exceed 72% cacao), melted
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 1/2 teaspoons coarse sea salt (such as Maldon)

Directions

  1. Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Place matzoh on sheet in a single layer, breaking as needed.  Don’t overlap matzoh too much but don’t leave any gaps.
  3. Stir sugar, butter, honey, and 1/4 cup water in a heavy saucepan over low heat until sugar dissolves.
  4. Increase heat to medium-high and boil without stirring, occasionally swirling pan and brushing down sides with a wet pastry brush, until caramel is a deep amber color, 13–15 minutes.
  5. Pour caramel evenly over matzoh.
  6. Immediately sprinkle almonds over. Let cool.
  7. Drizzle melted chocolate over caramel.
  8. Sprinkle cayenne and salt over. Let stand until chocolate sets, about 30 minutes. Break into pieces.

Chocolate-Covered Caramelized Matzoh Crunch – Matzoh Madness #1

March Madness may be coming an end, but I’m in the midst of my own matzoh madness after buying 5 pounds of matzoh at the grocery store (the supersized pack was on sale for $6).  In my defense, I’ve only bought matzoh one other time in my life, so I wasn’t well informed about how much matzoh that really is (that’s at least 85 sheets of matzoh).   Plus, I’ve been eyeing the recipe Chocolate-Covered Caramelized Matzoh Crunch, so I’ve had matzoh on my mind recently.  Initially I thought that I would just give away some of the extra boxes of matzoh to my friends, but after tasting it, I realized that it would be like giving someone a box of Saltines (but without the salt).  So, I’m left to find as many matzoh inspired sweets to make.

First up is Chocolate-Covered Caramelized Matzoh Crunch.  At it’s most basic version, this candy consisted of a bottom layer of matzoh topped with a brown sugar caramel baked until the caramel bubbles up and gets a bit foamy.  Then dark chocolate is spread over the top (with a sprinkle of sea salt), and the result is an airy, flaky, crispy candy that you can customize in infinite way.

This is where Matzoh Madness all started…Matzoh Madness 1

There’s actually matzoh and caramel hiding underneath all that chocolate.Chocolate-Covered Carmelized Matzoh Crunch - D Lebovitz 1

This recipe magically transforms bland, boring matzoh into a crunchy, sweet, slightly salty, caramely candy.Chocolate-Covered Carmelized Matzoh Crunch - D Lebovitz 7

After making my first batch, I quickly realized that I had barely made a dent in reducing my matzoh stash as I had only used up about 1/3 of one 1-pound package.  So, I made a second batch with mesquite smoked almonds sprinkled on top.Chocolate-Covered Carmelized Matzoh Crunch Smoked Almonds- D Lebovitz 4

 Chocolate-Covered Caramelized Matzoh Crunch

(From David Lebovitz)
Makes enough to fill an 18×13″ half sheet pan

Ingredients

4 to 6 sheets unsalted matzohs
1 cup (230g) unsalted butter, cut into chunks
1 cup (215g) firmly-packed light brown sugar
big pinch of sea salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup (160g) semisweet chocolate chips (or chopped bittersweet or semisweet chocolate)
1 cup (80g) toasted sliced almonds (optional)

Directions

  1. Line a rimmed baking sheet (I like to use an 18×13 inch half sheet pan, but this also works for an 11 x 17 inch baking sheet) completely with parchment paper, making sure it goes up and over the edges. This recipe gets messy so make sure your pan/sheet is well protected.  You can also use heavy duty foil, but I prefer parchment paper because it doesn’t stick at all.
  2. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  3. Line the bottom of the sheet pan with matzoh, breaking extra pieces as necessary to fill in any spaces.  I prefer not to overlap the pieces, but I make sure that there are no big gaps between the sheets of matzoh.
  4. In a 3-4 quart heavy duty saucepan, melt the butter and brown sugar together, and cook over medium heat, stirring, until the butter is melted and the mixture is beginning to boil. Boil for 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat.
  5. Add the salt and vanilla.
  6. Pour the mixture over the matzoh, spreading with a heatproof spatula.  It will be a very thin layer.
  7. Put the pan in the oven and reduce the heat to 350°F degrees. Bake for 15 minutes. As it bakes, it will bubble up, but check every once in a while to make sure it’s not burning . If it burns in spots, remove from oven and reduce the heat to 325°F, then replace the pan.
  8. Remove the pan from oven, and immediately sprinkle chocolate chips in a thin layer over the top. Let stand for 5 minutes, then spread the melted chocolate with an offset spatula.
  9. While the chocolate is warm, if you wish, sprinkle with toasted almonds (or another favorite nut, toasted, and coarsely-chopped), a sprinkle of flaky sea salt, or roasted cocoa nibs.  You can lightly press the nuts into the chocolate to ensure that they stick.
  10. Let cool completely (I refrigerate after the pan has cooled down a little to help speed up the setting process), and then break into pieces and store in an airtight container until ready to serve. It should keep well for about one week.