Pecan Roca

In case you are wondering what Pecan Roca is, it is actually supposed to be Almond Roca.  It’s like the candy called Almond Roca®, wrapped in gold foil, in a pink tin can.  And like Lays potato chips, once you have one, you have to have another one, and another one.  Almond Roca® is a very delicious candy, you can crunch it without causing you to lose any fillings, and will definitely will make you think that you have grown a pair of wings.  If you never have Almond Roca, it actually made from butter toffee, with the addition of little tiny crunchy almonds.  The next time you stroll the grocery isle and see this candy, grab it and munch it on the way home.  You will get hooked!  And I’m just stating that as a consumer who had eaten Almond Roca® before.

The reason I was making this candy was for a snack day at the office.  Once a month, we gorge ourselves, eating all kinds of sweets, chips, dips, you name it.  Last month Scott even fed us homemade meatballs!  Had I known that, I would have brought spaghetti!   And someone else could bring the garlic bread!  Alas, Scott didn’t even realize we had snack day this past Wednesday, and we missed out big time.  I even asked Scott if he would make amends by bringing meatballs yesterday, but to my disappointment, he said no.  :(

I was not feeling making anything too complicated, and thought about making the Burnt Sugar Almond I found from Tasty Kitchen.  But then I saw the recipe for Almond Roca by mdatwell and decided to make that one instead.  I grabbed my bag of almonds from the pantry, and found there were dead bugs in the bag!!!  Nuts infestation!!  It was a good thing that it was in a ziploc type bag, so the contamination was contained.  I just dumped the bag of almonds and scratched my head and looked in the drawer.  I had walnuts, but I’m not sure walnuts are a good nut for this candy.  I could be wrong.  So I decided to use pecans instead.  So that’s why I named this post Pecan Roca instead of Almond Roca.

So let’s get rolling.  I needed butter, sugar, water, pecans, and chocolate chips.  Easy goes.

 

 

I chopped the pecans first…

 

 

First I dumped cut up butter into a medium size pan.

 

 

Then I dumped the sugar into the pan…

 

 

Water, and then turned on the heat on high.

 

 

Then I started stirring.

 

 

As I was wondering about the three stages as indicated in the recipe, I was wondering, how long will I have to stir this thing?  Well, luckily the recipe indicates that the cooking time is 15 minutes, so I was relieved.  I didn’t want to stand there and stir for an hour… that is not an easy candy making.  At this point, the butter were melted already.

 

 

 

Within two minutes of the melting point, the liquid started to bubble.  This is the “runny stage.”

 

 

 

Then, after 10 minutes, it starting to look like the melted cheese stage.  Doesn’t this remind you of melted mozzarella cheese?

 

 

Then, the color started to turn a very light brown color…

 

 

Deeper color…  and I realized, I just made my first toffee!  :)

 

 

Darker….

 

 

 
And then all of the sudden it turned to the caramel color.  I need to be careful since at this stage, the caramel burns easily.  As I was stirring, I was wondering if I should roast the chopped pecans first… but I got lazy…

 

 

I removed the pan from the heat…And dumped the chopped pecans into the pan.  Well!  I didn’t need the roasting step at all, since the pecans sizzled as they went into the hot, bronze colored liquid.  They got roasted in there!

 

 

Then I poured the toffee onto a greased cookie sheet.  I had to use my big cookie sheet – since as I was cooking the candy, I eyeballed the regular cookie sheet and thought that there is no way all of the toffee will fit in one cookie sheet.

 

Then I sprinkled the chocolate chips on top….

 

 

 

I ended up using more than a cup… but, it was worth it….

 

 

 

I put a foil on top, trying to create a steaming effect and speed up the melting process of the chocolate chips…

 

 

Used my spatula to smear it…

 

 

And then sprinkled some more chopped pecans – this time  I used the pecan pieces for cookies.

 

 

And I let it cool.  I put the cookie sheet into the freezer to help speed up the drying process…

 

 

And I just plopped the candy off of the cookie sheet onto a cutting board…

 

 

And used a knife to break them up.

 

 

Voila, and then I had my candy ready!

 

 

People at the office loved it!  So, it is very easy to make, and it can be made as a gift too.  Just wrap it with a celophane plastic and tie a bow, you got yourself a Christmas present.

Until my next adventure!

Print recipe here.

 

Pecan Roca
Recipe adapted from mdatwell

Prep Time 10 Minutes
Cook Time 15 Minutes
Servings 36
Difficulty Intermediate

Ingredients
4 sticks Butter
2 cups Sugar (rounded)
4 Tablespoons Water
2 cups Pecans, Chopped
1 cup Chocolate Chips
½ cups pecan pieces for sprinkling
Preparation Instructions
Combine the first 3 ingredients and cook on high, stirring constantly through 3 stages:
1. Runny
2. “Cheesy”—it will look like melted white cheese
3. Runny and smooth, caramel brown color

Make sure you have the fan on your stove going, cause you’ll probably set off the smoke alarm towards the end.

When it is runny, smooth and caramel brown in color, remove it from the heat and add the almonds. Stir until combined and pour the mixture onto greased cookie sheets. Spread it into an even layer. It will harden as it cools.

While it is still warm, sprinkle chocolate chips on top and let them melt enough to get soft. Spread the chocolate in an even layer across the candy. While the chocolate is still “wet,” sprinkle the finely chopped almonds on top.
At this point, while it is still warm and soft, you can score the candy with a butter knife to make it break evenly, or just let it harden and break it into rustic pieces.

Store in airtight containers. Enjoy!

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