Photo: Danielle Bilton
I usually have a lot of success with any/all of Sherry Yard’s recipes; this was not one of them. For this post, I chose to make her “Homemade Twix Cookies”. It all sounded and looked great, but when I actually bit into one of these cookies, it was not what I had expected. There was way too much caramel and too much chocolate — the chocolate was a mistake on my part. I decided to change the recipe a little and I am going to give you a full shortbread recipe but with half the caramel. I would also recommend skipping the ganache layer as it was just too sweet. Also, to give the cookie an extra layer of texture, try adding chopped toasted peanuts to the caramel.
Source: Sherry Yard’s Desserts by the Yard
51/2 ounces (1 stick plus 3 tablespoons) unsalted butter, softened
1/4 cup sugar
2 cups cake flour
2 tablespoons ground rice (regular rice processed until ground, then passed through a sifter to get rid of chunks) (optional, I think. I didn’t use rice)
FOR THE CARAMEL TOPPING:
1 cup sugar
1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons Lyle’s Golden Syrup (available at most supermarkets and at whole foods stores)
1/4 cup water
1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
1/2 cup chopped toasted nuts
FOR THE CHOCOLATE GLAZE:
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- MAKE THE SHORTBREAD: Place a rack in the lowest position of the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F. Spray a 9-X-13-inch baking pan with pan spray and line with parchment paper. Spray the parchment.
- In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, cream the butter and sugar at medium speed until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Gradually add the flour and ground rice and allow the dough to come together.
- Remove from the bowl and press the dough evenly into the bottom of the pan. Place in the oven and bake for 12 minutes. Rotate the pan from front to back and bake for another 8 minutes, until the shortbread is a deep golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a rack to room temperature.
- MAKE THE CARAMEL: In a large saucepan, combine the sugar, golden syrup, water, and lemon juice. Brush down the inside of the pan with a little water, using your hand to feel for stray granules of sugar. Cover the saucepan and place it over medium heat for 4 minutes. After 4 minutes, remove the lid, increase the heat, and bring to a boil. Do not stir from this point on. Keep an eye on the pan. The mixture will be very bubbly. When stray sugar crystals appear on the sides of the pan, brush them down with a clean wet pastry brush. As the sugar cooks, the bubbles will get larger.
- In a small saucepan, bring the heavy cream to a boil. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- After 5 to 6 minutes, the sugar will turn golden brown. Insert a candy thermometer and when the temperature reaches 300°F, remove the pan from the heat and let it sit for 1minute, or until the bubbles subside. Carefully whisk in the heavy cream. Stir until smooth, then whisk in the condensed milk. Whisk until smooth.
- Return the pan to the heat and stir constantly over medium heat until the caramel reaches 240°F. Remove from the heat and pour over the shortbread. Allow to set.
- MAKE THE CHOCOLATE GLAZE: Melt the chocolate and butter in a microwave-safe bowl at 50 percent power for 2 to 3 minutes or in a heatproof bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water. Stir with a rubber spatula until smooth. Pour over the caramel and smear evenly. Let sit at room temperature or in the refrigerator until set.
- Cut into the desired size and serve. (The cookies will keep, stored airtight, for 1 day.)