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Video: Make Martha Stewart’s homemade nut brittle block

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    >> back with martha on today. this morning, edible goodies you can make for your loved ones. martha is here with tasty ideas from the december issue of martha stewart living .

    >> good morning.

    >> i love the idea of bringing a gift you made because it's thoughtful but this isn't stuff only martha can do.

    >> no, you can do this professor. these are candies and sweets you can make for the teachers, for the postman, for the paper delivery boy.

    >> hos tess gifts.

    >> great gifts.

    >> you can use peanuts, you can use cashews, you can use almonds and the syrup is very, very easy. it's just a sugar, baking soda . i'll add the vanilla first. and we cooked this to 238 degrees.

    >> okay.

    >> and use the candy thermometer . a little bit of baking soda which is what lightens the whole thing up and then peanuts.

    >> see how beautiful.

    >> yeah.

    >> that's your brittle.

    >> smells amazing too.

    >> and then this goes into a cookie sheet . you can break that one. that one is already cooled.

    >> then you break it up.

    >> not too hard.

    >> sorry.

    >> it's just so fun. i'm getting out my aggression.

    >> oh, you have aggression.

    >> no, but that was it.

    >> that is great and then spread this. spread that. don't touch this, it's very hot. and then the next thing is having you already decided.

    >> let's go to the neck one.

    >> okay. and then this either -- it's a bark, either white chocolate or dark chocolate .

    >> love it. so you can pour that into a prepared pan. it's sprayed with a vegetable spray and then parchment paper .

    >> okay.

    >> and you have a double bowliler thing going here.

    >> yeah. pour this right on to your parchment paper . this is very easy.

    >> this is really easy.

    >> and then you can embellish. this is just melted chocolate. it's called bark. and they sell this for a lot of money. so use a good quality chocolate. light or dark. now you can let this harden and then add the white chocolate on top of it which would give you a double layer or you can do it in a single layer and then look at the great toppings. you can choose what you would like to put in yours? raisins.

    >> peppermint.

    >> you can do it while it's hot.

    >> i'm going to do pistachios.

    >> do you do the whole pretzels? or break them up a little bit?

    >> you could but i'm going to do pistachios and orange peel and you can break it into little pieces.

    >> do you put it in the refrigerator?

    >> no. just let it harden.

    >> i was freelancing. okay. we have 30 seconds. let me about this.

    >> so this is popcorn balls. it's marshmallows, butter, and brown sugar . that's all it s. turn this off and then pour your popcorn right into here. freshly popped popcorn.

    >> absolutely.

    >> and then you have to have buttered hands. we embellish this. this is what is special. cho chopped up toffee and cranberry.

    >> make it into popcorn balls.

    >> of course.

    >> those are the popcorn balls. do you want to taste?

    >> yes.

    >> i want to show.

    >> look how beautiful. all of this packaging. you can find them at the craft store and decorating store but so pretty. all of these.

    >> it makes it look absolutely fabulous .

    >> all your gifts are made.

    >> thank you. they are made and beautiful too. thank you so much. you can find these ideas on today.com. i'm

TODAY recipes
updated 12/9/2013 2:52:08 PM ET 2013-12-09T19:52:08

Recipe: Basic bark

"Martha Stewart Living"

Ingredients
  • Vegetable oil cooking spray
  • Bittersweet, milk, or white chocolate, chopped, according to variation
  • Toppings, according to variation
Preparation

1. Coat a 9-by-12 1/2-inch rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray, and line with parchment, leaving an overhang on ends.

2. Melt chocolate in a double boiler or a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, stirring. Pour into baking sheet, and spread in an even layer.

3. Immediately sprinkle toppings over chocolate. Refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour. Peel off parchment, and break bark into pieces.

Serving

Variations:

Cherry and orange peel bark

S'mores bark

Peppermint bark

Lime and macadamia nut bark

Pistachio, dried cranberry, and toasted-coconut bark

Tips

Bark can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.

Recipe: Nut brittle block

"Martha Stewart Living"

Ingredients
  • Unsalted butter, softened, for baking sheet
  • Vegetable oil, for spatula
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/2 cup light corn syrup
  • Pinch of salt
  • 2 1/2 cups unsalted nuts, such as dry-roasted peanuts, cashews, hazelnuts, almonds or pecans, or toasted pumpkin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
Preparation

1. Brush a 9-by-13-inch rimmed baking sheet with butter, and oil an offset spatula; set aside. Put sugar, corn syrup, and salt in a medium saucepan with 1/4 cup cold water. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar has dissolved. Wash down sides of the pan with a wet pastry brush to prevent crystals from forming. Cook, swirling the pan occasionally, until the mixture registers 238 degrees on a candy thermometer (soft-ball stage). Stir in nuts, and continue to cook, stirring often so that the nuts do not burn, until the mixture is medium amber in color, 10 to 15 minutes.

2. Carefully stir in vanilla and baking soda (the mixture will foam up).

3. Pour onto prepared baking sheet, and using oiled offset spatula, quickly spread into a 1/2-inch-thick layer. Let cool completely.

4. Break brittle into pieces if desired; store in an airtight container at room temperature up to 1 month.

Tips

When giving as a gift, package this brittle block with cellophane, and include a small hammer and bow.

Serving Size

Makes one 9-by-13-inch pan

Recipe: Popcorn balls

"Martha Stewart Living"

Ingredients
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, plus more for buttering hands
  • 1 package miniature marshmallows (10 ounces)
  • 1/4 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
  • 3 quarts popped popcorn
  • 1 cup dried cranberries, or English toffee bits, optional
Preparation

1. Melt butter in a large heavy pot over low heat. Add marshmallows and brown sugar and stir until melted. Remove from heat.

2. Pour popcorn and cranberries, or English toffee bits if using, into pot; toss well. With buttered hands, shape into 2 1/2-inch balls. Set on parchment lined baking sheet to dry slightly.

Serving Size

Makes about 12 servings

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