Taffy, Toffee – what’s the difference

It happens all the time. I'll be doing a store tasting and a customer pick up a sample and declare “Oh Taffy” and I say “Close, it's toffee.”   Taffy always sticks in my teeth, as taffy often does.  When I think of taffy, I think of salt water taffy, that soft chewy favorite when you visit the beach.  But no, that's not what I make. I make toffee. It is a harder candy.   The recipe is similar for both with sugar and butter as main ingredients.  But let's check out what Wikipedia says…

Taffy: Taffy is made by stretching or pulling a sticky mass of boiled sugar, butter or vegetable oil,  flavorings, and coloring until it becomes aerated (meaning that tiny air bubbles are produced, resulting in a light, fluffy and chewy candy. When this process is complete, the taffy is rolled, cut into small colored pieces and wrapped in wax paper   to keep it soft.

Toffee: The process of making toffee requires the boiling of ingredients (sugar & butter mostly) until the mix is stiff enough to be pulled into a shape which holds and has a glossy surface. The resulting mixture will typically be poured into a shallow tray and allowed to cool to form a slab…often sticky to a hard, brittle material. A brown color, and smoky taste, is imparted to the toffee by the caramelization of the sugars.

So taffy - sticky and soft.  Toffee- hard and  brittle. They're both delicious.  Stay tuned for the next lesson on the difference between toffee and peanut brittle.