Bringing the sugar to a boil.
Crunchie bars are one of our absolute favorite British candies. Called Violet Crumbles in Australia, these are airy bars of caramel-like "honey comb" coated with a thin layer of chocolate. So far our addiction has been limited by the availability of the candy bar here in the states - but no longer!
We had no idea that this candy would be so easy to make! Well...sorta.
All it takes to make the honey comb part is boiling sugar, corn syrup, and honey until they're a light amber color (or 300° if you want to get technical about it!). This was actually much easier than other candy-making we've done. It was very easy to gauge when to stop cooking, even without a candy thermometer.
And then you add the baking soda...
Goodness gracious, does this stuff bubble up! If you make this, definitely use the biggest pot you have - at least a 6-quart one. We didn't quite know what "quadruple in size" really meant and then watched our concoction inched ever closer to the rim of the pot while we stirred as hard and fast as we possibly could!
Alls well that ends well, though. We got the mixture poured out on a silpat (definitely use some sort of silpat for this) and it set up beautifully.
We wanted to get as close to the real thing as we could, so we broke the main blob into several pieces and then used a serrated knife to saw/crack the candy into bar shapes. Then we melted some chocolate and dipped in each bar to coat. Perfect! The bars had a deep caramelized honey flavor with that signature airy-crunchy bite, and the dark chocolate made the perfect contrast.
Coating the bars in chocolate had the double effect of making them even more delicious and also protecting them from melting. The few pieces of uncoated candy that were left behind quickly absorbed moisture from the air and melted into a sticky mess within a day. The coated bars lasted for a few weeks and stayed nicely crunchy!
All in all, a very successful candy-making adventure. We definitely got our Crunchie Bar fix - and then some!
Get the Recipe: Honeycomb (a la Crunchies and Violet Crumbles) from the Seattlest
Related: Recipe: Caramel Popcorn
(Images: Emma Christensen)