Darn those girl scouts….
Ok, so these bars have nothing to do with the girl scouts except for the fact that my husband and I have been stuffing our faces with girl scout cookies for the past 2 weeks. As I went to make something from this month’s Cookbook of the Month, I started wondering why I had chosen a baking book for this month – after all the cookies we’ve eaten, we need a diet cookbook!!
But the choice had already been made, the book purchased, and I’m actually excited to do some baking. So I decided that for the most part, these treats would be given away. In my church, I work with the teenage girls, and we get together every Wednesday night. I decided that this month, they will be the recipients of this month’s recipes!
I’ve made something similar to this recipe before. These actually weren’t my first choice to make – I had a cookie recipe I was going to make, but I didn’t read through the recipe soon enough and I found out the dough needed to be refrigerated for 6 hours. I would be cutting it close, so I looked through the book for something that I had all the ingredients on hand for, and these were the first thing I came across.
I really almost ran out of time with these, too. You need time for the dulce de leche, which took me a little over 2 hours. And then the chocolate layer needs at least 1 hour in the fridge, and I barely had that much time. The chocolate was still a little soft when I cut these, so they weren’t perfect when I cut through them. I did change the chocolate to semi-sweet instead of dark chocolate, since I was feeding them to teenagers.
My husband and I each tried one small piece before I whisked them off. We both liked them, but thought that the chocolate really overpowered the bar. I could barely taste the dulce de leche, and that is my favorite part! But the response I got from the girls was amazing! They all ranted and raved about them. I think for the next recipes, I’ll have the girls rate the recipe and average that score with mine and my husband’s, but for this week, I’ll have to just make up a rating based on their response combined with ours! I cut these bars pretty small because they are quite rich, so the amount of bars you get depends on how big you want to cut them.
Recipe Rating: 4.5 out of 5
slightly adaped from Baked
Makes 24-48 bars
for the shortbread
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/4 cups (2 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
2 /12 cups all-purpose flour
1 large egg yolk, slightly beaten
for the caramel filling
28 ounces sweetened condensed milk (two 14-ounce cans)
for the chcolate glaze
6 ounces semi sweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon light corn syrup
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened, cut into cubes
For the shortbread:
Preheat the oven to 350°F. butter the bottom and sides of aa 9-by-13-inch baking pan.
In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the sugar and butter together until blended.
Add 2 cups of the flour and beat until well combined. Add the egg yolk and beat for a few seconds, or until just combined.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Dust the top of the dough and your hands with a little flour. Use your hands to gently work the dough into a 6-by-6-inch square. You will have to turn the dough and sprinkle the top with flour as you go. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup flour on the surface of the dough. Fold the dough over and knead until incorporated, then flatten the dough into a rectangle. Transfer the rectangle to the prepared pan and press it into the pan.
Prick the dough all over with a fork and bake in the center of the oven for 20 to 22 minutes, until golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely.
For the caramel filling:
Put the sweetened condensed milk in a medium heatproof bowl and set it over a saucepan of boling water over low heat. Cook for 1 to 2 hours, until thick and caramel colored. Remove the bowl from the pan and beat until smooth.
Pour the caramel filling over the cooled shortbread and place the pan in the refrigerator until cooled, about 2 hours.
For the chocoalte glaze:
In a large nonreactive metal bowl, combine the chocolate, corn syrup, and butter. Set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water and cook, stirring with a rubber spatula, until the mixture is completely smooth. Remove the bowl from the pan and stir for 30 seconds to cool slightly. Pour the mixture over the chilled caramel layer and use an offset spatula to spread it into an even layer.
Put in the refrigerator for 1 hour, or until the glaze hardens.
Remove the pan from the refrigerator 30 minutes before serving so as not to crack the chocolate glaze. Cut into squares and serve.
The bars can be stored in the refrigerator, tightly covered, for up to 4 days.
Others who have made this recipe:
I am giving away a copy of this month’s Cookbook of the Month – Baked. All you have to do is comment on the Cookbook of the Month’s posts – you have 5 chances to enter. Every Friday, a new Cookbook of the Month post is posted, so make sure to comment on each post for more chances to win! The contest ends at 11:59pm MDT on Wednesday, April 29th and the winner will be announced on Thursday, April 30th.