This little ditty is a treat my wife found recently and asked me to make to help feed the crowd that was joining us on the 4th of July. As it turns out, what with other goodies we had made along with treats that guests brought, we didn't even have to dip into these babies.
This was a situation that I was not at all unhappy about, because these things are REALLY good, and the little pig inside of me would have moped and whined if forced to share with such a large crowd. Consisting of a shortbread crust, a caramel center and a bittersweet chocolate ganache top, think of these as the best freakin' TWIX bars you'll ever eat. They're a breeze to put together though they do take a little time because each layer has to be made and cooled independently.
I was a little concerned when the pan was finished, sprinkled generously with Maldon salt (no, the salt is not optional) and set in the fridge to completely set, that I'd NEVER be able to get it out of the pan without ruining the bars, the pan, or both. I'm happy to report that an overnight setting period did the trick, and by gingerly running a knife around the outside of the whole pan, I was able to pop the pre-cut bars out easily onto aboard for cutting. Big ones for me, teeny-tiny ones for everyone else.
Enjoy! – Steve
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1/4 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1 tablespoon ice water
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1 14-ounce can sweetened condensed milk
- 1/2 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
- 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, diced
- 2 tablespoons golden syrup (such as Lyle's Golden Syrup) or dark corn syrup
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 6 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, chopped
- 3 tablespoons whipping cream
- Flaked sea salt (such as Maldon)
- Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter 11x7x2-inch metal baking pan. Blend first 4 ingredients in processor. Add butter. Using on/off turns, blend until coarse meal forms. Add 1 tablespoon ice water and egg yolk. Blend until moist clumps form. Press dough onto bottom of pan; pierce all over with fork. Bake until golden, piercing if crust bubbles, about 20 minutes. Cool completely.
- Whisk first 5 ingredients in medium saucepan over medium heat until sugar dissolves, butter melts, and mixture comes to boil. Attach candy thermometer to side of pan. Boil gently until caramel is thick and temperature registers 225°F, whisking constantly, about 6 minutes. Pour caramel evenly over crust; cool 15 minutes to set.
- Meanwhile, melt chocolate with cream in microwave in 15-second intervals, stirring occasionally. Spread chocolate over warm caramel; sprinkle with sea salt. Refrigerate until chocolate is set, at least 1 hour. DO AHEAD Can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and keep refrigerated.
- Cut dessert lengthwise into 4 strips. Cut each strip crosswise into 5 or 6 slices. Transfer to platter and serve.