Hello hello to you,
Yesterday I embarked on the fifth recipe from Mary Berry’s Baking Bible. Goodness me, when you think about it, I have an awfully long way to go! But nevertheless, I strive on.
Last night was all about the Millionaires’ shortbread. You know what I mean, the buttery biscuit, layered with sweet caramel and topped off with chocolate – essentially, a Twix.
Not going to lie, I was a bit dubious in the method of making them but they taste truly GORGEOUS.
I ate two while cutting them.
The only tip I’d give to this is, lay a sheet of greaseproof paper or baking parchment at the bottom of your tin, only the bottom, not over the sides. When trying to cut the shortbreads out of the tin, it can lead to scratching (my beautiful Swiss Roll tin now has a few silver marks 😦 , so lay the greaseproof on the bottom, and grease with the butter as you normally would)
For the marbled effect on the top, you need dark, milk and white chocolate. The book calls for 50 g of each but this was no where near enough. My mum taught me how to do this, and you do it in two stages – layer half the milk, followed by half the dark, and push it outwards to make sure it’s completely covered. You don’t want them to amalgamate into one so be careful. Repeat with the milk chocolate and the dark, and then finally pour on the white chocolate Using a skewer, swirl it around vertically, then horizontally to achieve that effect.
What I also found was that the chocolate is extremely difficult to cut without cracking, so use a very sharp knife, and keep wiping it to make sure each cut is done cleanly. If anyone has a suggestion as to how to avoid this and make cutting a lot easier, please do comment and tell me – I’d really appreciate it!
The only problem you’ll have is you won’t want to stop eating them.
I had a look on the BBC good food website, where a similar recipe was being used, and many had commented reporting how the caramel hadn’t set properly or it hadn’t thickened. My suggestion would be, to follow the instructions of how to make the caramel and make sure you bring to the boil then allow to simmer for about 5 minutes and it definitely will thicken. Another important point to add, is don’t stop stirring for even a second. It is vital that the caramel never stands still, otherwise it will catch at the bottom of the saucepan, and you’ll have bits of burnt sugar floating around. It also means you don’t have to sieve it and go to any extra hassle. In regards to it not setting, I left it to sit in a cool place for about 90 minutes, and by the time I returned, it was ready to be topped with chocolate.
ONE FINAL POINT TO MAKE…I varied the amounts for the shortbread. I used 270 g plain flour, 90 g caster sugar and 200 g softened butter. The reason I did this was because I wasn’t sure if it would be enough for the whole tin. I like to think I was right because there were no left over shortbread dough; I’ve provided the Mary Berry recipe as well, so I’ll leave it down to you!
So with all this in mind, here’s the recipe!
For the shortbread:
- 250 g plain flour
- 75 g caster sugar
- 175 g softened butter
For the caramel
- 100 g butter
- 100 g light muscovado sugar
- Two 397 g cans of condensed milk
For the topping
- 100 g dark chocolate
- 100 g white chocolate
- 100 g milk chocolate
- Preheat the oven to 180C/Fan 260C/gas mark 4.
- Grease (and line) a 33 x 23 cm swiss roll in.
- Mix the flour and sugar in the bowl and make sure it’s combined. Rub in the butter with your fingers until it resembles fine breadcrumbs.
- Bring the mixture together until it forms a dough. then press into the base of the tin.
- Prick the shortbread lightly with a form, and bake in the oven for 30 minutes/or until very lightly browned.
- Allow to cool in the tin.
- For the caramel, put all of the ingredients into a large saucepan and heat gently until all the sugar has dissolved (remember to keep stirring!)
- Bring the mixture to the boil and then reduce the heat; allow it to simmer for 5 minutes, the mixture will thicken, but continuously stir.
- Pour over the shortbread, and leave to cool.
- For the topping, melt the dark chocolate, the white chocolate and the milk chocolate in three separate bowls (either in the microwave with 30-second bursts or over a pan of simmering water. Place the chocolate in alternating spoonfuls (or how I’ve suggested above), create the marble effect with the skewer, and then leave to set. (I left it in the fridge overnight in order for it to be fully set).
- Cut into squares, and prepare for a taste sensation!