I made it - I actually dove into the pool and survived. Yes, I have entered the 21st century, and the world has not come to an end. I can’t believe what a breeze it was to use Windows Photo Gallery for my entire photo editing process. I can’t believe how many hours (probably days) I have lost moving from program to program. I am shaking my head as I am typing. Pretty soon I will have my new wireless printer (that actually is wireless) and nothing will stop me.
That is…until September. That is truly when the world will come to an end. Tonight I took my older daughter to the Middle School open house. Wow. That is just about all I can say. Wow. (Moms – any guesses on where that is from?? Yes, just about the greatest book ever.) Chaos – that’s exactly what it was – in one word or less. Before we left, she asked me if she should bring her cell phone in case we get separated. What?? Of course we will not get separated. Right. There were more people in that school tonight than I ever could have imagined. At one point I thought I was going to lose it - I hate crowds.
Then we both had a little freak-out session in the car on the way home, except that I pretended to be nice and calm, like a good mom should – and I let her freak out about how it is going to be so crowded, and so hard to find all the classes, and what if my locker sticks? Then I told her about our dear friend and neighbor down the street – who couldn’t get into his locker for the first week of school, and had to carry all of his books around the entire week – including his lunch – and then one night told his mom he wasn’t going back to school. That made her feel better – good job mom.
So – what is just about the only thing that can make anyone feel better after that? Salted Pistachio Brittle. This stuff is like crack, not that I have ever tried that – but it is ridiculously addicting, and amazingly delicious. You can’t just have one bite, oh no sir-e-sir. Good thing I had a nice pile to come home to. This recipe from Bon Appetit is just about the best candy I have ever made – and just about the easiest. No rolling caramel wrappers, you just break and serve. I feel better already.
Here we go – the world is changing so fast, and my girls are growing up – but there will always be salted pistachio brittle in my life – that I know will be true. Please remind me of that in September – I am definitely going to need some then, as I kiss my baby good-bye that fall morning…and let her into that chaotic world. Wow.
- Nonstick vegetable oil spray
- 1 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup light corn syrup
- 1 cup unsalted, shelled raw natural pistachios, very coarsely chopped
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
- Coarse gray sea salt (such as fleur de sel or sel gris)
- A candy thermometer
Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper; spray with nonstick spray and set aside. Whisk sugar, corn syrup, and 3 tablespoons water in a medium saucepan. Stir over medium heat until sugar dissolves. Fit saucepan with candy thermometer, bring mixture to a boil, and cook until thermometer registers 290°, 3-4 minutes.
Using a heat-proof spatula, stir in pistachios, butter, and kosher salt (syrup will seize initially, but will melt as it heats back up). Continue to cook syrup, stirring often, until thermometer registers 300° and pistachios are golden brown, 3-4 minutes. Caramel should be pale brown (it will darken slightly as it cools). Sprinkle baking soda over and stir quickly to blend caramel thoroughly (mixture will bubble vigorously).
Immediately pour caramel onto pre-pared baking sheet and, using a heat-proof spatula, quickly spread out as thin as possible. Sprinkle sea salt over and let caramel cool completely. Break brittle into pieces.
DO AHEAD: Brittle can be made 1 week ahead. Store airtight between sheets of parchment paper (to prevent sticking) at room temperature.
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