December 8: J-Dub’s Toffee Grahams

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J-Dub’s Toffee Grahams

(from Gooseberry Patch’s Old Fashioned Country Cookies)

  • 24 square graham crackers
  • 2 sticks butter
  • 1 c. brown sugar
  • 1 c. chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 325. Arrange cracker squares on a lightly greased cookie sheet with edges around it. In a saucepan, bring the butter and sugar to a boil and boil for 2 minutes. Pour over crackers, covering them well. Sprinkle with nuts and bake for about 10 minutes. Cool slightly and cut into 24 squares or 48 “fingers.”

If there’s an easier cookie out there, I don’t know what it is. Aside from buying a pre-made roll of cookie dough or the individual raw sugar cookies with pictures on them, there probably isn’t one. If there is, let me know! I want to see!

If you’re one of my regulars, you know I make this every year. Seriously, every year. Why? Because it’s easy and I can be unbelievably lazy for someone that runs a crazy cookie endeavor each year. But also because these are always popular with my cookie-eaters. Young and old alike love these. I make enough cookies that are weird and specialized as it is; it’s good to have an old standard that I know will please most people.

Today, I’m at Man Friend’s while he watches sportsball on TV. We ran to Trader Joe’s (I love you TJ’s) and I asked if he minded if I made cookies here. He did not, and I came back with the ingredients for today’s cookie.

Now, Man Friend is a man living by himself. While he’s a neat freak (more on this later) and a great cook, my kitchen has more general stuff in it than his. I attribute that to me living with three growing kids, and also, you know, running this cookie blog. He doesn’t have a cookie sheet, so we made do.

He’s Italian and he calls this a lasagna dish. Because I’m a little bit of everything and nothing all at once, I call this a 9×13 pan. I like his name for it better.

Him being a neat freak is something that scares me, mostly because I’m…not. Scroll back through the pictures of my kitchen during cookie season for evidence of this. I knew I couldn’t make his kitchen look like this. At all. Not even a little.

I asked for a sauce pan and he hands me a small saucepan. I flip it over to see how big it is.

Okay, 1 quart. With two cups of butter and 1 cup of brown sugar, that’s three cups. This should work.

Or not.

Right after I took this last picture, I said, “Honey, how many cups are in a quart?” He answered “Four,” which is right, so now I have a beef with Circulon and will be writing them next, asking how long it’s been since their cookware has been regulated by the Department of Weights and Measures. But I digress.

The last thing I wanted in my neat freak’s kitchen was a mess. And unfortunately, thanks to Circulon’s version of a quart, I had one.

This is once we poured it into a different–and bigger–sauce pan.

That’s a small spillover mess there. But in the terms of my baking messes, we all know this is minor.

I tetrissed the graham crackers in the lasagna pan, as well as in another smaller square pan and poured the toffee mixture on top of it.

Added the nuts and put it in the oven for 10 minutes. Actually, because I wasn’t using cookie sheets, I left them in the oven for 15 minutes.

December 15: J-Dub’s Toffee Grahams

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I haven’t talked about her much this year, but J-Dub is my friend and baking antithesis. I love her to pieces, which is why I tease her, and the stories I tell (her starting a fire once with chocolate chips and a microwave; her wanting to wrangling both of our little kids instead of making a treat to sell for our MOPS fundraiser; me using her oven for its first baking even long after she moved in…) are absolutely true. 

She loves this picture of us. I just know it.

Much like Clark Griswold dedicates his tree to the Griswold Family Christmas, I dedicate these cookies to J-Dub and the one time she made them. Good things must be celebrated. 

These are pretty simple. I put two sticks of butter in a pot (and then use the wrappers to grease my pan) and add a cup of brown sugar. While it’s coming to a boil, I arrange my graham crackers on my greased cookie sheet (with edges…this is very important). I go edge to edge with the graham crackers and leave only a little space at the end. 

Once the mixture has been brought to a bowl, let it boil for 2 minutes. Then pour on the graham crackers. (Also? My kids normally couldn’t care less about graham crackers. But when I’m using them in a recipe, they ask for some. I don’t get it.) Top with chopped pecans and bake for 10 minutes. When it comes out, it should be bubbly. 

Cut it when it’s still somewhat warm and wait to eat it. Otherwise, you risk pulling out a filling. I’ve done it. It’s expensive. Wait. 

There’s been no word from J-Dub if she’s attempted these or any other baking adventures this year. I feel pretty safe in assuming there haven’t been any. 

J-Dub’s Toffee Grahams

(from Gooseberry Patch’s Old Fashioned Country Cookies)

24 square graham crackers

2 sticks butter

1 c. brown sugar

1 c. chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 325. Arrange cracker squares on a lightly greased cookie sheet with edges around it. In a saucepan, bring the butter and sugar to a boil and boil for 2 minutes. Pour over crackers, covering them well. Sprinkle with nuts and bake for about 10 minutes. Cool slightly and cut into 24 squares or 48 “fingers.”