This was one of my favorites treats when I was growing up, and it's perfect if you're starting to crave some holiday treats but you're not quite ready to dive into your holiday baking just yet.
This toffee takes about 10 minutes to prepare, and then a half-hour to set, and I think it's about the perfect combination of flavors and textures -- salty, crisp crackers, sweet and chewy toffee, and cool, rich chocolate. I can seriously eat an entire pan in one evening, which is why it's very dangerous for me to make this very often. (And I try to give as much of it away as quickly as possible.)
My mom used to make several pans of this in one sitting when I was in high school. We had a smaller kitchen with very little counter space, so Mom would just plop down onto the then-carpeted kitchen floor, adding crackers to all the pans spread out around her.
This being one of my favorites, imagine my shock when the hubby refused to eat it ... based solely on the presence of the saltines. (He actually referred to it as "white trash candy." Of course, he also won't eat something if it has "bake," "casserole," or "hotdish" in the name.) If you run into a similar marketing issue, just try to think of a more creative name for this toffee. Or try a slightly more exotic-sounding cracker, like a matzo cracker. (I once saw a similar recipe in a cooking magazine.)
Or just save all the toffee for yourself.
Makes 18-24 pieces
1 sleeve saltine crackers
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
2 cups chocolate chips (I use milk chocolate)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet or pan with foil, and spray the foil with cooking spray.
2. Spread crackers in even rows, so crackers are touching, but not overlapping. (The number of crackers depends on what size baking pan you’re using. I like a 9" by 13" or 10" by 15" pan).
3. In a small saucepan, heat brown sugar and butter over medium-high heat, stirring, until mixture comes to a rolling boil.
4. Pour mixture over crackers, spreading as evenly as possible.
5. Bake 5 minutes.
6. Let cool 1 minute, and then sprinkle with chocolate chips.
7. Let chocolate chips melt for about 1 minute before spreading evenly over toffee.
You can also sprinkle the toffee with nuts, crushed crackers, or sea salt at this point.
8. Chill 30 minutes to set toffee and chocolate.
9. Peel away foil. Using your hands, break toffee into pieces.
(I like to store my toffee in the refrigerator.)