Well, I jinxed it! In my post last week I talked about how it never snows in Vancouver. Well, sure enough, we woke up to a fresh snowfall on Monday morning. It snowed for the better part of the day and I was able to go for a snowy dog walk and enjoy the falling flakes.
I am now officially in the festive spirit. Let the holiday baking begin!
Sesame snaps may not be a traditional item on your Holiday Baking List, which is too bad, because they really are delicious! I’ve always loved snacking on those little packs from the grocer, but since they’re becoming harder and harder to find these days, I’ve made a few attempts to make them at home. Until now, no recipe ever worked out quite right. Some were incredibly complicated, some varied in texture or chewiness, and some (my attempt at a “healthy” version) just tasted awful.
Finally, I’ve found a simple sesame snap recipe that yields exactly the kind of sesame snap candy that I love. Crunchy, sweet, nutty, with a touch of vanilla.
The base of this recipe comes from Canadian Living, with some slight adjustments. All you need is some time, a few ingredients, a candy thermometer, and some patience!
If you’re new to making candy, I’d definitely read up a bit on dealing with molten sugar or candy making. It’s a little intimidating, but it’s not as hard to deal with as it looks. Use a wider pot rather than a tall one (so the sugar caramelizes more evenly) and make sure to keep a close eye on it in case it boils over.
Once the base is made, stir in the sesame seeds and quickly pour out onto a baking sheet. You’ll want to move quickly here, as the sesame snaps start to set as soon as they’re removed from the heat.
These freeze remarkably well, and can be kept in a proper freezer bag for up to a year! What a convenient, sweet-tooth-craving snacking solution. Simply remove them a few minutes before serving and they’ll thaw enough to eat. Alternatively, store them at room temperature for a few days.
|Sesame Snaps|| || |
- 1¼ cups sesame seeds
- 1½ cups granulated sugar
- ⅓ cup corn syrup
- 2 Tbsp butter
- Pinch of salt
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- ½ tsp baking soda
- Line a baking tray with parchment paper. Lightly grease the top of the parchment paper and set aside.
- In a skillet, toast the sesame seeds over medium heat, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes until lightly golden; set aside.
- In a large (wider rather than tall) saucepan over medium heat, bring sugar, corn syrup, and ⅓ cup of water to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Once mixture has begun to boil, stop stirring, and boil until a candy thermometer reaches 230°F. Use a pastry brush dipped in cold water to brush down the sides of the pot as it cooks.
- Stir in butter and salt, then continue boiling until mixture reaches 300°F. Remove from heat and stir in sesame seeds, vanilla, and baking soda.
- Pour sesame mixture onto prepared baking tray. Smooth out the top with a greased knife. Let cool about 5 minutes until almost set, then score the surface into squares. Let cool completely, then remove the parchment paper from the baking sheet and break sesame snaps into pieces according to the scored lines.
- Store in an airtight container in the freezer for up to a year, or at room temperature for a couple of days.