As per post title (and sorry to friends finding out about that on here), last night’s baking-for-the-office effort was one of my last. This time, though, not only were the results actually edible enough to bring in this morning, but my chocolate millionaire’s shortbread was so good that housemate R’s boyfriend NWSixDan actually DREAMT about it. Alas, this is another of those occasions when I can’t take too much credit: the recipe belongs not to me but to Rachel Allen, an annoying lady who nevertheless gives good cake. On the plus side, statistically I can now expect only one in every two of my baking attempts to end in disaster.
Allen calls these chocolate caramel bars, but that’s boring, so in honour of my soon to be ex-overlord, Mr Murdoch, I give you:
Billionaire’s Shortbread, for Rupert
For the chocolate base:
50g cocoa powder
300g caster sugar
2 eggs, beaten
225g plain flour
For the caramel layer:
1 x 397g tin condensed milk
2 tbsp golden syrup
75g caster sugar
For the chocolate topping:
200g dark/milk chocolate
1 tbsp sunflower or vegetable oil
Preheat the oven to 160C and grease and line the base of a small Swiss roll tin measuring 20x30cm/8x12in. In a medium sized saucepan over a medium heat, heat the butter for the chocolate base, stir in the cocoa powder and then the sugar and mix until smooth [this takes a while, as the sugar has to melt]. Remove from the heat and stir in the eggs until and then the plain flour. Spread the chocolate base over the tin and bake for 20 minutes until firm on top. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool while you make the caramel layer.
In a medium-sized saucepan over a medium heat, melt the butter and then add the condensed milk, golden syrup, sugar and a generous pinch of salt. Turn the heat to low and stir continuously for 12-15 minutes [Rachel’s estimation: it took me half an hour…] until the mixture is dark caramel in colour (do not let it burn). Spread evenly over the chocolate base and allow to cool.
Melt the chocolate in a bowl sitting over a saucepan of simmering water. When it is melted, stir in the oil and then pour over the caramel layer and smooth out, leaving to cool and set. To serve, cut into squares. These will keep for a week in an airtight container.