The toffee crunch tin

The toffee crunch tin. Own photo.

The tin is old and worn, the once bright orange dahlias on the side have been scrubbed to a mottled yellow or even further to white, there’s a ding on the lid and rust spots on the bottom.

And yet, of all the objects we sorted through after Grandpy died, it was the one all five siblings coveted. For love, and toffee crunch, had filled it for many years.

The logo on the botton of the tin. Own photo.

Once upon a time it must have been filled with Jacob’s Cream Crackers, for W.&R. Jacob & Co (L’Pool) Ltd, Biscuit Manufacturers, Liverpool, England is emblazoned across the bottom. Cheese and crackers, the perfect afternoon tea in front of the fire, with wrestling on the tv. At least that’s how I remember it, but the crackers from this tin would have been long gone before I arrived on the scene. Instead, my first memory is of it being filled with Nana’s perfect crumbly flapjack. Flapjack so good, that I almost never choose to eat it nowadays, for nothing can match it.

It’s toffee crunch though (or possibly toffee crispie depending on which family member you ask) for which this tin was famous for containing. Lined with greaseproof paper, stacked sideways with golden squares of deliciousness.

The recipe is super simple. My version is just thirteen words long. Apparently, I didn’t even think I needed to specify units of measurement.

Recipe for toffee crunch, Natasha’s version.

The secret was in the toffee. Mum was always on the look out for slab toffee (which normally came in 4oz packs). Werther’s Originals could, with a lot of unwrapping, be deployed as a slightly inferior alternative.

Heading back to university each term, I was presented with a large plastic bag of toffee crunch to take with me and after Nana died, Grandpy kept up the tradition, never failing to open the cupboard and pull out the tin to send me back to Leeds with sustenance. It never lasted long. One bite of the sweet, chewy, crunchy square quickly led to another and then another.

After Grandpy died we managed a fairly amicable split of his possessions. In the early days we put aside anything that two or more of us wanted and left it for a few months until the memory of his death had lost some of its sharpness that could have caused disagreement. Somehow, I ended up with the tin. It was only when I got home and opened that discovered Grandpy had been prepared until the end as it was full of the very last toffee crunch Grandpy would ever make.

With much gratitude to my Nana and Grandpy for all their love and toffee crunch.

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