{Chocolate Review}: Toffee Theory

October 27th, 2011 · 13 Comments · Candy, Chocolate, Field Guide to Candy, Recipes, Reviews, San Francisco, SF Events

toffee field guide candy
image from Field Guide to Candy

A few weeks back, I was invited to be a judge for TasteTV‘s Best Toffee in North America Competition. A whole boxful of toffees delivered to my door? Yes, please!

Those of you who are curious about the difference between toffee, English toffees, and buttercrunch, feel free to see my older post on buttercrunch. I became quite obsessed with untangling the various monikers of this candy while researching my candy book, if you couldn’t tell.

These days, most buttercrunch is marketed simply as “toffee”; I only saw one brand out of thirteen that was labelled “English toffee” (Which may perhaps provide some comfort to poor Brits trying to find their version of the candy abroad). For that reason, I will refer to all the candy I sampled for the competition as toffee, to avoid confusion. I will maintain, though, my abiding love for the word “buttercrunch”. If I ever make and sell my own version, I’ll call it buttercrunch, and probably confuse the heck out of everyone.

So how does one determine the best toffee?


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The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

December 19th, 2008 · 35 Comments · Candy, Chocolate, Recipes


I can’t help it: no matter how crazed with end-of-the-year things-left-to-do I may be, how bitingly cold the weather has been (hey, I’m a California girl – I don’t do cold weather), or how desperately I’m trying to avoid the clarion call of consumerism (and the endless “SALE!” ads in the mail), I love, love, love Christmas and the holidays.

I’m helpless before storefronts bedecked in glittery ornaments, little black dresses and flutes of champagne at sleek soirees and cozy gatherings, little children bundled up in scarves and puffy coats, and kitchens smelling like gingerbread and mulling spices. Have I mentioned my boyfriend’s new favorite drink is mulled cider of his own recipe?

I also love sending out holiday cards, and finally finished mailing them out today – I know, I’m one of those late ones. But judging by the lines at the post office, I’m in good company, at least. Not everyone’s a fan of writing cards, I know, but I spend so much of my time tip-tapping on the computer these days, it’s nice to actually put pen to paper and recall what it’s like to form your thoughts by hand.


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