I love candy-making. What I don’t love is modern recipes obviousely written by someone who doesn’t understand what they’re doing. I’ve seen some recipes for pepita brittle around, but they all say to cook until “amber in color”. What does that mean? If you’re making candy, you need to have an acurate thermometer or understand how to test the stage your candy is in. And none of the recipes I’ve seen call for more than 10 minutes cooking time. Brittle takes alot longer than that to cook. Otherwise you’ll have a flabby slab of chewy not-so-goodness. So don’t be intimidated by the process, it really is very simple. Just use a thermometer and take your time. (I love my frying/candy thermometer- it’s always accurate and easy to read, unlike the old glass style that fog up). Oh, and this would be a wonderful substitute for those who can’t have nuts!
PUMPKIN SEED BRITTLE
2 cups sugar (please use Cane sugar)
1 stick unsalted butter
1/3 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup plus 2 T water
1/2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp kosher salt, divided
1 tsp cinnamon
1 1/2 cups pepitas (These are the little green raw pumpkin seeds that have the outer white hull removed, You can find them locally in the bulk section at Winco, otherwise look for stores that carry Mexican ingredients)
Toast the pepitas over medium to medium high heat in a large dry skillet. Cook until they crackle and snap, turn golden brown, and become fragrant. It should take 5-10 minutes.
While hot, toss the seeds with 1 tsp of the salt and the cinnamon.
Line a large cookie sheet (about 12″ by 16″) with greased parchment paper or a silicone mat. Set aside.
Combine the sugar, butter, corn syrup, and the water in a large pot. Cook on medium to medium high heat, stirring often. When it starts to get amber in color check with your thermometer, you want it to reach 300 degrees, the hard crack stage. It should take about 20 to 25 minutes to reach that temperature.
Working quickly, remove from heat and add in baking soda and remaining tsp salt, then the toasted pepitas. Stir together with a wooden spoon or silicone spatula and spread out on prepared cookie sheet.
Let cool completely.
To break into pieces, either lift up a corner and it should snap off (continue to use hands to break pieces up)
Or hit with a small hammer, the handle end of a knife, whatever. It should crack into pieces pretty easily.
Store in an airtight container at room temperature up to 2 weeks or so. (If it isn’t going to be eaten quickly I seperate layers with wax paper so it won’t stick together.