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Make toffee

You will need:

  • A saucepan and cupcake papers
  • Sugar 250g
  • Butter 10g
  • Water 3 teaspoons
  • Vinegar 2 teaspoons
  • Food colouring
  • String or a seed crystal

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Instructions


The experiment is similar to growing salt crystals, except the supersaturated sugar solution is hot, so have an adult handy.
 
  1. Carefully heat the water & vinegar in the saucepan.
     
  2. Add the food colouring and sugar and stir constantly, slowly dissolving the sugar and bringing to the boil. Allow to simmer for 10 minutes - checking in frequently to avoid burning or overflowing.
     
  3. With an adult, carefully pour the mixture into the cupcake papers and place a string in each of the mixtures.

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toffee shards

Why Does This Happen?

Toffee is made from a supersaturated solution of sugar and water. Sugar is dissolved in heated water. When it cools, the sugar crystallises. Seed crystals or a rough string help the crystals nucleate and start to grow – crystals growing from molten rock in a magma chamber work on the same principle. 

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