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Old 12-05-2017, 12:29 PM   #1
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Location: Reading, PA
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Brittle Heating Reaching Temp

OK, here’s my issue in trying to make black walnut brittle candy....I can’t seem to get the recipe’s sugar/water mixture hot enough! I tried two different recipes; one produces a clear brittle candy, while the other seems to make a darker brittle. I mix/cook in Visionware on an electric stove, and use a candy/fryer thermometer.
In both cases, I can’t seem to get the initial water/sugar mixture to the 265 or 280 degrees required...and therefore can’t reach the slightly higher temperature some recipes end with.
With the simpler, clear brittle, the water/sugar mixture never seems to reach 235. The resulting product is cloudy and “grainy”.
With the darker brittle, the mixture seems to “burn” as I try to approach the 280 degree mark required. The mixture “smokes” even before reaching 250 degrees. While this recipes cracks apart when cooled, the brittle has a burnt taste to it.
Please tell me what this retired, 68 year young guy is missing!!!
Help please!!!

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Old 12-05-2017, 02:11 PM   #2
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Try looking at some tried and true recipes from places that actually test their recipes. Taste Of Home, and Serious Eats. https://www.tasteofhome.com/recipes/...-brittle-candy

The black walnuts don't go in until the end. I don't know what the smoke point is of black walnuts, something to consider.

Check your thermometer to see if it is accurate, boil water, make sure the thermometer reads 212 degrees F.
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Old 12-05-2017, 02:22 PM   #3
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Thank you!

Thanks for your response....I waited until the end to add the nuts in both cases. The smoking occurred with the dark brittle recipes as I. Was trying to bring the corn syrup, sugar, water mixture up to temperature.

My thermometer checked out as accurate, and is used in other recipes also.

Thanks!
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Old 12-05-2017, 02:32 PM   #4
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Well that is super Michael. When I'm making toffee (almonds) or brittle (any nuts), I watch the pan, the bubbles are small then big, the mixture may go from foamy to large glassy bubbles or the other way around, then, at some point, the bottom of the pan starts to brown a little, (this is when the smoke begins) turning the sugar mixture a light caramel color, then it progresses to a darker caramel color. This last part where it is starting to brown, must be done slowly to keep it from burning, as it will go from light to dark very quickly if the heat is on high. Turn the heat down once the temperature is over 212 degrees F so the temperature slowly rises. (I honestly do this without a thermometer, as I like a medium caramel color and that is where I stop the process.)

You can do this! I bet that black walnut brittle is incredible.
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Old 12-05-2017, 02:57 PM   #5
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Thanks again!

Thanks for your confidence....I was I had some! ;-)

I guess the part I’m struggling with is getting the brittle’s water/sugar mix up to temperature. Even when I burnt this morning’s batch, I hadn’t gotten higher than about 250 degrees or so.

That said, I did notice a change in the mixture as I heated it, and yes, I can see I erred by not reducing heat once the mixture started to darken...but of course, I still fear that doing so may never get the mix hot enough. Still the more I think about this, I’m beginning to feel that if I were to have removed the mix from the heat just as it darkened, mixed in the nuts and stirred, that perhaps it would have turned out OK, without the burnt taste.
Thanks again!!!
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Old 12-05-2017, 03:06 PM   #6
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If you don't mind, next time you make it, keep us in the loop.

We can all learn something here. I've never used black walnuts and I'd like to hear how it worked out. Goodest of luck!
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