English toffee day
January 8 is English Toffee Day, and there's a debate boiling in the toffee lovers' world: Is English toffee hard or soft? The answer might surprise you - it's both.
Toffee is a combination of caramelized sugar or molasses and butter. In some cases, notably American toffee, vanilla can be added. Nuts and dried fruit are also popular additions. The mixture is heated until it reaches the hard crack stage of sugar preparation, which means that after it's cooled, you can break the candy up into smaller pieces easily.
American toffee isn't brought to the hard crack stage, so it's much softer and more pliable. Toffees in England (though not what we typically call "English toffee") can also be made this way. The aforementioned hard variety is popular across the pond, and therein lies the confusion. We'll stick with English toffee being the hard stuff for our purposes.
Another type of toffee also popular in the UK and Commonwealth countries is honeycomb toffee. Made with brown sugar, golden syrup, corn starch and vinegar, the reaction that takes place between these ingredients forms a toffee that's got a hard shell and a soft chewy middle. It's most popularly used in the Crunchie candy bar.
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