Crumbly minty shortbread, thick golden caramel and silky smooth dark chocolate – what a combination of taste and texture. This is a wonderfully rich and refreshing treat.
Makes: 16 squares
Time: 60 minutes + quite a lot of cooling time
Level: Fairly easy
Equipment: 20cm/8” square baking tin
- 200g/7oz plain flour
- 25g/1oz Semolina (optional)
- 60g/2oz caster sugar
- 6 – 9 Extra strong mints (or similar), crushed
- Pinch of salt
- 150g/5½oz unsalted butter
- A little green food colouring
- 125g/4½ oz soft light brown sugar
- 125g/4½ oz butter
- 1 x 397g tin of condensed milk or Dulce de Lech
- 60g/2oz golden syrup
- A few drops or more of peppermint extract (depending on the strength used)
- 125g/4½oz dark chocolate
- 25g/1oz butter
1. Preheat oven to 180C / Fan 160C / 350F / Gas 3. Grease and line the bottom and sides of the tin with baking parchment.
2. To make the base, put the plain flour, semolina (if using), caster sugar, crushed mints & pinch of salt in a bowl and mix.
3. Melt the butter in a medium saucepan, stir in the food colouring very gradually to test the colour as you go. Pour it over dry ingredients and mix to form a dough.
4. Press the dough into the prepared tin, stab with a fork and bake for about 25 mins.
5. As it cools, make the caramel layer. Place the light brown sugar, butter, condensed milk and golden syrup in a large saucepan and heat gently, stirring until the butter has melted. Stir in the peppermint extract a little at a time, tasting as you go. Once you’re happy with the taste, turn up the heat and simmer for 10 – 12 minutes, stirring all the time, until the mixture is thick and becoming firm.
NB You need to add the extract before turning up the heat, otherwise the mixture will be very hot when you taste it.
6. Pour the hot caramel filling over the biscuit base, tipping the tray back and forth to level the mixture. Leave to cool and set.
NB I used to put it in the fridge, but now prefer a longer cooling time at room temperature. I find that melted chocolate poured onto very cold caramel can harden too quickly, before I can spread it smoothly.
7. Melt the chocolate and butter together over a bain marie, stirring regularly. Pour the mixture over the set caramel layer and tilt the tin to spread it evenly. Set aside to begin cooling and setting.
8. When the chocolate has almost set, mark lines where you intend cutting later. When the chocolate has fully hardened, cut the slab into the pre-marked pieces.
NB I cut using a metal bench scraper (see photo below). Whatever you use, wipe it clean after every cut.
Here are a few suggestions that you might like to try
If you’d like to make a comment or ask a question please do, via the contact page.