Molasses Taffy is a dark toffee, flavoured with rum and made crunchy with a handful of walnuts. It will keep well if wrapped in waxed paper and stored in an airtight tin.
12 oz. soft brown sugar
6 fl. oz. molasses or black treacle
1 oz. butter
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 oz. walnuts, coarsely chopped
4 fl. oz. water
2 teaspoon rum essence
Place the sugar, molasses or black treacle, butter, lemon juice, walnuts and water in a large saucepan. Place the pan over moderate heat and stir the mixture with a wooden spoon until the sugar has dissolved.
Increase the heat to moderately high and boil the mixture until it reaches 260 °F on a sugar thermometer or until a little dropped into cold water separates into threads as it cools. The threads should bend slightly when touched with the spoon.
Remove the pan from the heat. Allow the bubbles to subside and then stir in the rum essence.
Lightly oil a large marble slab or heat-proof surface. Pour the sugar mixture on to the prepared surface and leave it until a thin skin forms and it is cool enough to handle.
Using an oiled palette knife or spatula, release the sugar mixture from the surface and form it into a ball. Divide the ball into four balls. Gradually stretch each ball to make a long rope about J-inch thick. Fold the rope in half and, holding one end, twist the rope around three times.
Using oiled scissors, cut the rope into 5-inch lengths. Wrap each piece of the toffee in a piece of waxed paper and store in an airtight tin until ready to be eaten.