What’s your favorite kind of candy?
I don’t even know how to answer that question because I feel like there are so many kinds of candy its kind of hard to choose. You could maybe ask what my favorite peanut butter candy is, or my favorite fruit flavored candy. Truth be told as I grow older candy has started to lose much of its appeal. You know I’m going to sneak a box or Reese’s Pieces into the movies and steal a Mounds bar from your candy dish but when faced as I am after Christmas with the possibility of eating candy every day, well, no thanks. I’d much rather eat three blondies (oh, just you wait) and call it a day.
What I really like is something I can sink my teeth into. Nougat is just that. Dense yet airy, chewy and sweet this little confection is just right for me. Now that I’ve figured out I can make it myself I’m probably in big trouble (or at least my hips are). You can use any kind of chocolate you like to cover the bars. I made some with milk chocolate and some with dark. While I preferred the dark chocolate, milk will give you more of that classic snickers taste.
Despite all the steps these were a breeze to make. The most time consuming part was actually when I made the mistake of letting them cool on a wire rack instead of on wax paper. The chocolate closed itself around the wires, meaning I had to cut each and every square off the rack. Things got a little messy but now I have a nice little bag of snickers bits in the freezer for putting on ice cream or eating in a moment of necessity. Still, do yourself a favor and let them cool on wax paper. And then invite friends over, or you’re going to eat them all yourself.
For the Nougat:
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup evaporated milk
1 1/2 cups marshmallow fluff
1/4 cup peanut butter
1 1/2 cup salted peanuts, roughly chopped
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
For the Caramel:
1 14 ounce bag of caramels
1/4 cup whipping cream
For the Chocolate Coating:
2 pounds high quality milk or dark chocolate, or a combination of the two, coarsely chopped
Line a 9x13 inch baking dish with aluminum foil and spray thoroughly with cooking spray. If you want thicker candy bars you can use a smaller baking dish.
First make the nougat. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add sugar and milk, stirring until dissolved. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring occasionally, for five minutes. Add fluff, peanut butter, and vanilla, stirring until smooth. Turn off the heat and fold in peanuts. Pour into the prepared pan and let cool completely.
Once the nougat is cooled, prepare the caramel. In a medium saucepan over medium low heat, combine caramels and whipping cream. Let melt, stirring occasionally, until smooth. Pour over nougat layer and let cool completely.
Once the nougat and caramel are cooled, use the aluminum foil to remove from the pan and onto a cutting board. Using a large, sharp knife coated in cooking spray, cut into desired size bars.
To melt the chocolate, place it in a heatproof bowl over a pot of simmering water. Stir occasionally until melted and smooth. Using two forks or a dipping tool dip each piece of candy into the chocolate, turning it over until completely coated. Allow any excess chocolate to drip off and place on a baking sheet lined with wax paper. Once all the candy is dipped place the sheet in the refrigerator until the chocolate is set.