History of English Toffee

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Written by Cache Toffee

June 23, 2021
Toffee is one of those delicious sweets that can serve as an ingredient for larger candies or a variety of candy in and of itself. How toffee gets made depends on your location. Certain varieties of toffee have become more popular than others over the years, with English toffee standing head and shoulders above its peers.
english toffee
pure butter in english toffee
What is English toffee, exactly? What makes it so unique compared to other varieties? Here’s what you need to know about the history of this delicious and quintessentially British candy.

What Is Toffee?

Before we discuss what makes English toffee stand out compared to other varieties, let’s start with the basics: toffee is a relatively simple hard candy constructed from butter and some sort of sugar. While that may sound easy, toffee is temperamental and can be affected by temperature, altitude, and humidity, to name a few. Toffee is delicious on its own, but most artisanal toffee recipes include wrappings of chocolate, nuts, and a host of other ingredients.

Understanding English Toffee History

Now, let’s dive into the past to understand the history behind this classic candy. Toffee didn’t appear in dictionaries until after 1825, making it something of a newcomer to the world of candy. Most food historians agree that the sweet treat likely originated in Wales and then rose to prominence across Britain and Europe where supplies of butter and eventually imported sugar were plentiful. English toffee maintains its extreme popularity due to its unique flavor profile and regional variations.

What Makes English Toffee Special?

Technically speaking, there are two main types of toffee that we Americans consume. One, which sometimes gets misnamed as “English toffee,” is actually called “buttercrunch.” The other is the genuine sort of English toffee. What’s the main difference between the two? What gives real English toffee its unique flavor? As you might expect, it’s a difference of ingredients. Buttercrunch, the Americanized version of toffee, uses granulated white sugar or high fructose corn syrup in its creation. Americanized toffee may include nuts, while a completely traditional British toffee will not. On the other hand, English toffee uses pure cane sugar, brown sugar, or molasses as its sweet base and always involves chocolate.

So, Why Do We Call Buttercrunch “English Toffee”?

If the toffee we enjoy does not, in fact, use the traditional English toffee recipe, why do we give it that name? Simply put, it sounds more pleasing to the ear and “fancier” than buttercrunch. This makes it more appealing for mass marketing purposes.
At Cache Toffee, we use a traditional English Toffee recipe, pure cane sugar, and a small batch technique. Lori Darr, our founder, started with her mother’s recipe and went to work perfecting the creamy crunchy texture. After that, it has been all about Lori’s creativity developing all the scrumptious combinations of ingredients.

Does All This Talk of Toffee Have Your Sweet Tooth Going?

We don’t blame you if your mouth is watering after all this talk of English toffee. If you want to sample some of the best varieties of toffees on the market, Cache Toffee has you covered. Why not browse our website www.cachetoffee.com or give our Toffee of the Month Club a try?
Your sweet tooth will thank you later, we promise!

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