Tuesday, February 14, 2012
Happy Valentine's Day!!! I feel incredibly loved today. I curled up under a comfy blanket on the couch and watched the Magic Schoolbus with my son this morning before sending him to preschool. Later tonight I am seeing my wonderful fiancé! A nice treat since he lives across the border and we only usually see each other on weekends. Wishing everyone a fantastic Valentine's Day! If nothing else it is a good excuse to induge in lots of sugar!
These bars combine a crumbly shortbread base with a soft, decadent caramel filling. Then they are topped off with a thin layer of chocolate. I love love love the filling. Made with sweetened condensed milk, it is very dulce de leche-ish. Firm enough to hold its shape when cut but soft enough to melt on your tongue.
I have heard of a variation of these called "Millionnaire's Shortbread" because they are so rich. They are also incredibly addictive.
Caramel Filled Shortbread Bars
9" Square Pan
1 1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, cold
1 can (approx 1 cup) sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter
2 tbsp corn syrup
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup chopped pecans (optional)
2 oz. semisweet chocolate, melted
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease or line a 9" square pan. Make base by combining flour and sugar. Cut in butter until pea-sized. Press the crumbly base mixture into the prepared pan to form an even layer. Bake this for 20-25 until golden brown.
2. Filling: In a medium saucepan, combine condensed milk, sugar, butter and cornsyrup over medium-high heat. Stir constantly. When butter is melted and sugar is dissolved, bring to a boil then reduce and simmer, stirring often, until it carmellizes and turns golden brown. Stir in vanilla and pecans (if using. Pour the filling over the base and spread to cover base evenly. Let cool and set fully, at least 1 hour. [I left mine overnight].
3. Spread the melted chocolate evenly over the filling. It will be a thin layer. Let stand to set fully (another hour or so) before cutting and serving.