Because A Friday Treat is the Perfect Way to End the Week!

Friday, 25 May 2012

Millionaires Shortbread

Following on from last week’s Bakewell Tart, today we’re going for another classic – Millionaires Shortbread. I can honestly say that never in my entire life have I ever met a person who does not love this overly indulgent excuse for a biscuit/bar/general baked good. Therefore you cannot go wrong if you choose to spend an hour of your Friday (other days are available) having a go at this recipe. Worst case scenario, everything goes wrong and you end up scooping melted chocolate, caramel and biscuit out of a cake tin...that’s my kind of worst case scenario.

Now to begin with these delicious little chaps, one thing that has always annoyed me about them is the name. Do you go for ‘Chocolate Caramel Shortbread’ or ‘Millionaires Shortbread’? Is the latter being snobby? Is the former insinuating that you are an idiot by having to name it with every ingredient involved? Who knows? I like Millionaires Shortbread sounds jazzier.

Regardless, this is another of those great recipes which can be so incredibly simple but with exceptional results. I’m trying to be traditional here and am therefore making all of the layers separately and from scratch (minus the chocolate obviously...) It is however, a recipe that can be as complicated or easy as you want it to be. If for example, you wanted to go for quick, fast and delicious, you could make the shortbread layer using smashed up shortbread biscuits mixed with melted butter (as you would for a cheesecake base), the caramel using the excellent pre-made stuff and sticking some melted chocolate on top to finish it off. Job done.

That, or you can make it extra special, spend a little more time and follow this recipe. As I said, in terms of audience satisfaction, you can’t go wrong with this one. That is of course, if it makes it out of your kitchen and doesn’t mysteriously disappear in the mean time...what do you mean there’s chocolate all around my mouth?

Some Final Tips Before You Get Started:
  • I’ve used dark chocolate in my recipe whereas most recipes call for milk chocolate. I’ve done this just due to my personal taste in order to try and reduce some of the sickly sweetness which comes with Millionaires Shortbread. If you’re not a fan or you like that sweetness, by all means use milk chocolate instead.
  • When making your caramel, watch it and stir it constantly or else it will burn to the pan and you’ll end up having to sieve it onto your biscuit base. I of course, have never done this...maybe.
  • We’ve gone over the best way to melt chocolate many times in the past – using a bain marie or a heatproof bowl over a saucepan of boiling water. In this recipe I did this for the large quantity of dark chocolate, however with the 50g white chocolate, I put this in a heatproof ramekin and melted this in the microwave, just for speed and because it’s easier to wash a ramekin than a bowl (laziness). You have to be careful when doing this however as the chocolate can really easily burn. I avoid this by blasting in the microwave for only 10 seconds at a time and stirring it after every 10 seconds until the chocolate is melted. It’s quick and easy but just be careful.
Millionaires Shortbread


For the Biscuit Layer:
200g Plain Flour
150g Unsalted Butter (softened)
60g Caster Sugar

For the Caramel:
397g Tin of Sweetened Condensed Milk
100g Light Brown Sugar
100g Unsalted Butter
2 tbsp. Golden Syrup

For the Chocolate:
250g Dark Chocolate
50g White Chocolate

9inch Square Brownie Tin

1)      Preheat the oven to 180◦C, grease the base and sides of your cake tin and line the base with greaseproof paper. In a large bowl, combine together the plain flour and caster sugar. Cut the softened butter into cubes and add to the flour and caster sugar. Using the tips of your finger against your thumbs, rub the butter into the flour and sugar. This will initially look like a breadcrumb mixture but will come together into a dough.
2)      Tip the dough into your prepared tin and press it down firmly to evenly cover the base. Bake for approximately 25 minutes or until golden brown and firm. Remove and leave to cool.
3)      While the base is cooling, place the condensed milk, light brown sugar, unsalted butter and golden syrup into a non-stick saucepan. Place over a medium heat and stir continuously for 7-8 minutes until the butter has melted and the mixture has thickened and turned a golden caramel colour. Spread evenly over your biscuit base and leave to set and cool for at least 30 minutes.
4)      For the chocolate layer, melt the down both chocolates in separate bowls using either a bain marie or the microwave (if using the microwave, be careful not to let it burn). Once melted, pour the dark chocolate over the caramel and spread evenly. Using a spoon, drizzle lines of white chocolate vertically over the dark chocolate. Finally, using either the point of a knife or a skewer, drag it across the chocolate layer in horizontal lines to get that swirling/dripping effect. Leave the chocolate to set before cutting into small squares or larger bars. Enjoy!


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