Croccante di Mandorle (Almond Brittle)

By • October 26, 2011 • 16 Comments

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Author Notes: At every family Christmas gathering I can remember as a child, croccante di mandorle was always on the dessert table. Recently, I asked my mom how to make it, and she said "it's just sugar, water and almonds!" Sounded simple enough, so I did a little investigating and found a great video recipe on GialloZafferano's youtube channel, which I adapted. I've adjusted the amounts of sugar and nuts, and left the skins on the almonds because I think it's much more colorful and pleasing to the eye. The anise seeds gives the candy a subtle licorice flavor, which I love with almonds and citrus. Serve with an espresso. Sambuca optional.mrslarkin

Makes about 1 1/4 pounds

  • 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 cups whole almonds
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons anise seeds
  • one half of a fresh large lemon (optional, but fun)
  1. Line a quarter sheet pan, or small rectangular pan with parchment paper. Set aside.
  2. Place almonds on another parchment-lined sheet pan and lightly toast in a 350 degree oven until fragrant. Remove from oven and let cool. Chop about half of the almonds. I use my hinged lemon juicer to crush some of my nuts and it works quite well. Set almonds aside.
  3. Over medium/low heat, melt sugar, lemon juice and water in a large saute pan, using a wooden spoon to stir occasionally. When sugar has dissolved and is golden-blonde in color, turn off the heat and stir in the almonds and anise seeds. Mix well.
  4. Carefully pour the lava-hot nut mixture into the prepared pan. Using an oiled rubber spatula or lemon half, carefully spread the nut mixture out. The lemon half will impart a lovely lemony flavor to the brittle. The spatula, not so much.
  5. Let cool for a few minutes, then cut into strips or squares. Optionally, let cool completely and break apart into rough shapes.
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over 2 years ago mehrunnisa

mrs larkin, thanks for the wonderful recipe. i tweaked it a bit to go the middle eastern way but the family loved it. just in case you are interested i made hazelnut croccante with sumac spice. the recipe is here with a credit to you http://comeconella.blogspot...

Mrs._larkin_370

over 2 years ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

I'm honored you tried, and liked, the croccante, mehrunnisa! Thank you so much for the blog post, too.

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over 2 years ago mehrunnisa

what should the consistency of the final croccante be like. really hard or slightly chewy?

Mrs._larkin_370

over 2 years ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

this is a hard croccante.

Gator_cake

almost 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

This is really delicious! I love the anise flavor. Thanks, mrsklarkin!

Massimo's_deck_reflection_10_27_13

about 3 years ago lapadia

Mouthwatering, and a citrus genius...mrslarkin, love your optional suggestion!

Mrs._larkin_370

about 3 years ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

Thanks lapadia. Hope you are feeling better!

Massimo's_deck_reflection_10_27_13

about 3 years ago lapadia

Thanks, mrslarkin...feeling better each day :)

3-bizcard

about 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Wonderful and I agree with HLA and Bevi the lemon half spreading method is brilliant! YUM!

Mrs._larkin_370

about 3 years ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

thank you sdebrango!!

Lorigoldsby

about 3 years ago lorigoldsby

Yes! You have inspired me to start using other citrus fruits in my candy making smoothing steps!

Mrs._larkin_370

about 3 years ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

great, lori! It's pretty fun!

Cakes

about 3 years ago Bevi

Sambuca mandatory! Spreading with a lemon half sounds like a great trick in general!

Mrs._larkin_370

about 3 years ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

Thanks Bevi. Have you tried the Sambuca Black?? It is very awesome.

Gator_cake

about 3 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Love it, mrslarkin! Especially the instructions for spreading the brittle with the lemon half - what a great idea!

Mrs._larkin_370

about 3 years ago mrslarkin

Mrs. Larkin is a trusted source on Baking.

thank hla! It works great - just be careful because that sugar is HOT!