Crack Two Ways

Is it a cookie?  Is it a candy?  The name most commonly used is “crack”, perhaps because it is made with “crack”ers or the way it “crack”s into pieces or perhaps simply for it’s addictive qualities.  This salty and sweet treat cooks up in about 20 minutes using 5 common household ingredients.  Recipes for crack abound all over the www with three major types, graham crack, matzoh crack and saltine crack.

This candy is open to a lot of variation.  Its a great last minute “what do I have” kind of recipe.  You can mix it up with different crackers, different types of chocolate and different nuts (mixed in or on top)

I recently made two different varieties, matzoh crack and graham crack.  I paired the matzoh crack with bittersweet chocolate and roasted salted pepitas (aka pumpkin seeds) sprinkled on top.  I paired the graham crack with semisweet chocolate and almonds mixed right into the toffee.  Two variations on a single sweet, crunchy, buttery theme.

CRACK

Print-Friendly Recipe

  • Enough graham crackers, matzoh or saltines to line a half-sheet pan
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 0 to 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt (see Note)
  • 1 cup chocolate, chopped or chips
  • 1/2 cup toasted nuts, sliced or chopped

NOTE:  As with most desserts, the balance of salt to sweet is key in this recipe.  If you are using a sweet cracker and unsalted nuts, by all means use the full 3/4 teaspoon of kosher salt in the toffee…or…save some to sprinkle on top.  If you are using a salted cracker (like saltines) or a salted nut, you will want to back off on the salt in the toffee and/or omit it completely.  Some of this is a judgment call “to taste” according to what you like.  However, I will say that I think most people don’t use enough salt in their dessert, so you may want to experiment with adding a little more than you think is appropriate.

PHOTO NOTE:  I documented the step-by-step process of making the graham crack, but making matzoh or saltine crack is just the same.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Lay the crackers or matzoh out in one layer on a parchment-lined rimmed cookie sheet.

In a small saucepan, add the butter, brown sugar and salt (omit if using saltines)

Cook stirring over low heat until everything is melted.  Bring it to a boil then let it boil for 2 minutes without stirring.

If you like, stir in the nuts (I used almonds on the Graham Crack, but you can use whatever).  Alternatively, you can leave out the nuts and sprinkle them over the chocolate at the end (which is what I did with the Matzoh Crack).

Pour this molten buttery sugary goodness over the crackers, covering all the tops.

Spread it evenly over the crackers.

Pop it into the oven for 8-10 minutes.  When it comes out, it will be all bubbly and you will realize why you lined the pan.

Melt the chocolate in the microwave if you want to drizzle the chocolate (like I did with the Graham Crack).  Alternatively, you can just sprinkle the chocolate on the hot toffee, wait a minute to let the heat from the candy melt the chocolate, then spread (like I did with the Matzoh Crack).

If you have reserved the nuts (like I did with the Matzoh Crack), sprinkle them over the chocolate now.  If they are already in then you are done.

As soon as it is cool enough to handle, transfer the parchment paper to a rack to cool completely.

When it is completely cool, break into pieces.  Store at room temperature in a sealed container for up to 4 days.

MATZOH VS. GRAHAM CRACKERS:  Winner…Matzoh

Of the two types made here, I preferred the matzoh crack because it was lighter and crispier.  The molten toffee soaked into the matzoh as opposed to the graham crack where the toffee was more of a top layer.  Also, I liked the nuts on top.  They were prettier and had more crunch.  Having said all that, both types were devoured in short order and I heard no complaints.

STORAGE:  Store uneaten crack in the fridge…it won’t last long.

11 Comments

  1. Prefect timing on this one. I volunteered to bring a sweet to a meeting on Monday and had not decided what to make yet. I am going to do a batch of matzoh and a batch of saltine. I shall report back.

    Reply
  2. Simply delicious! Perfect crack for me!!

    Reply
  3. I can`t stop looking at this! It`s absolutely divine and I want to try this…

    Paula

    Reply
  4. I love these! My mom used to make these with graham crackers and called it almond crunch. :P I think crack is a pretty apt name though!

    Reply
  5. OK, here is my report. Both the matzoh and the saltine versions were really good. In my opinion there was no clear winner. A couple of things that I discovered. One is to have a pretty solid layer of crackers in the pan. I left an entire row’s worth of saltines empty and all of the crackers spaced themselves evenly during their time in the oven. Not really a problem, it just made for a lot of cracker-free seams. The second thing is that I found it much easier to sprinkle the nuts on top of the melted chocolate rather than mixing them in with the sugary goodness. When they were mixed in, it made it much more difficult to evenly spread the sugar mixture and the melted chocolate later on.

    I took these to two different events and got rave reviews at both. Thanks so much for the recipe!

    Reply
    • Excellent! Thanks for research. I intend to try the saltine method next because I know that some people swear by them. — H :)

      Reply
  6. i sure would like a crack at these! they look wonderful!

    Reply
  7. DW makes the graham cracker version. I never thought about it before, but ‘crack’ describes them perfectly. I’ve been known to eat an entire 9×14 pan of them. At Christmastime my father got into them and said “I don’t know what’s wrong with me, I can stop eating them!” When DW makes them she covers the entire pan with crackers, cutting them into smaller pieces if needed. The best pieces are the ones where the toffee has oozed underneath the crackers. Mmmmm.

    Reply
  8. Wow! This looks great! I find I like recipes with less ingredients. Simpler is usually better (in my opinion)

    Reply
  9. I love that you used matzoh! I can’t wait to try it!

    Reply

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