This week's Tuesdays with Dorie (TWD) recipe was chosen by Whitney of What's left on the table?: Caramel Crunch Bars. I've had my eye on these for quite some time now, and was glad to see that they were finally picked!
It's a caramel-sweet brown sugar cookie/shortbread, slathered in a layer of chocolate, and then sprinkled with toffee bits! I love anything caramel or toffee so I couldn't wait to try these. Those who live outside of the U.S. may have trouble finding Heath toffee bits, but if you can't find them, you can simply make your own toffee and crush them into bits.
I decided to take this opportunity to try the Jembrana chocolate I won from Amano through Blake Makes. The Jembrana chocolate is made with cacao beans harvested from Bali. It has a deep chocolate flavor, a gentle nuttiness, and a very subtle coffee undertone. Chocolate purists will probably insist that you enjoy this chocolate by itself, but this was the perfect choice for Dorie's Caramel Crunch Bars, which actually contain a small amount of coffee in them. If you are a chocolate lover and haven't tried Amano chocolates yet, I encourage you to give them a try. They are one of the few American based chocolate makers that focuses on producing a super premium, high quality chocolate.
It seems that these bars were received with mixed emotions in our TWD group. I totally loved them, even had a hard time eating just one. Just imagine a chocolate chip cookie dipped in chocolate and then toffee bits - that's what these tasted like! :) Even better, they're easier to make than cookies, because you bake it all in one pan then cut it into bars. Ten minutes of prep time and it was ready to go in the oven!
Thanks Whitney, for choosing the Caramel Crunch Bars. I will definitely be making these again! If you would like the recipe, you can find it here. Make sure you visit the TWD Blog Roll to see what everyone else thought of these crunchy treats!
* Recipes notes
- I used semisweet chocolate chips, finely chopped, in this recipe but mini chocolate chips would be great (and convenient) to use here.
- Several bakers found these bars to be a bit on the thin side, but I found them to be just right. If you want a thicker bar, use a 9x9-inch square pan instead of a 13x9-inch pan.
- Be very careful not to overmix the dough.
- These will keep, covered, for about 4 days. Wrapped airtight, they can be frozen up to 2 months.
- For more tips, click here.