4

If Memory Serves: Secret Toffee

^
Keep Dallas Observer Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Dallas and help keep the future of Dallas Observer free.

If Memory Serves chronicles moments from my dining past, perhaps explaining what's wrong with me.

Every year around the holidays, my mom sends a tin of what she calls "Secret Toffee."

Actually, I learned the name of this chocolate-toffee cookie thing just last week, having spent a few decades requesting it by description whenever I'd make a trip to see the folks. But if forced to list what I really like about the season, Secret Toffee would rank ahead of vacation days, time with family and bowl games.

It's so good, in fact, that well-behaved kids from strict families confronted with a tray of Secret Toffee will forget such niceties as sharing, honesty and that it's wrong to bludgeon other people--toddlers especially--with a baseball bat to prevent them from gaining free access to the fridge.

The secret?

Saltines, of course.

The way I understand it, you create a simple syrup by melting butter and brown sugar. You pour this evenly in a pan then arrange a layer of saltines on top. As it bakes, caramel seeps through the crackers and hardens. Finally, you spread melted milk chocolate morsels on top, sprinkle with pecans (I've also had them with walnuts and almonds) and pop in the fridge.

As it works out, the crackers allow traces of soda and salt to creep into the mellow, bittersweet mass. The caramel-soaked saltines also take on an interesting chewy-crispy texture. And it's impossible to convey in words just how good this becomes.

I do know that my brother made it home for Christmas this year and tried to keep his kids from getting into the candy/cookie (whatever it is) through a series of ruses, a few outright lies and at least one threat of violence.

Fortunately, my mom mailed a large tin of Secret Toffee to me before he arrived. It's already empty.

Keep the Dallas Observer Free... Since we started the Dallas Observer, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Dallas, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Dallas with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.

 

Join the Observer community and help support independent local journalism in Dallas.