‘Bake Off’ is back and I wasn’t sure if I was going to enjoy the new series; especially as the show made a controversial move from the BBC to Channel 4 last year. I’m normally incredibly excited for the start of a new series, but this year I didn’t have quite the same enthusiasm for the show returning again. Saying that, I am I actually quite enjoying the new series and am pleased to see that the show hasn’t changed too much. I do, however, miss the old team – especially Mary Berry, can someone hurry up and make her a Dame already?!
This recipe is inspired by Caramel week, which was a Bake Off first. We seen the bakers make Caramel before, but we’ve never whole programme centred around it. It made for great television because Caramel can be quite unpredictable.
I’m not sure Paul Hollywood would approve of my method of making Caramel, as it’s somewhat of a cheat to use the microwave… but, the result is perfect Caramel that sets brilliantly every time.
I’ve made Caramel on the hob many times and sometimes it’s been a bit hit and miss. Possible scenarios have included, burning myself in the process, burning the caramel to the bottom of the pan, or almost burning the house down… not with the microwave method!
Gluten Free Millionaire’s Shortbread
For the shortbread base:
275g gluten free self raising flour
175g unsalted butter, cut into cubes
100g caster sugar
For the caramel layer:
1 x 397g tin of condensed milk
100g unsalted butter
100g dark brown sugar
Approx 1/2 tsp Sea Salt – but depends on your taste!
For the chocolate layer:
250g dark chocolate
250g milk chocolate
1. Preheat oven to 160 degrees C/gas mark 3 then grease and line the base and sides of a 20 x 20 square tin with greaseproof paper.
2. To make the shortbread base, mix together the flour and sugar in large bowl, then rub in the butter until left with a breadcrumb like texture.
3. Start to bring mixture together with your hands until you have a smooth ball of dough.
4. Press the dough into the tin, smoothing it into an even layer that reaches the corners of the tin.
5. Bake for 25 – 30 minutes or until golden brown, then set it aside to cool whilst you make the caramel.
6. To make the caramel, place the butter into a large microwavable bowl and heat until melted. Add the sugar and give the ingredients a good mix until you can’t feel any grains of sugar on the bottom of the bowl – you may need to heat it again for another 30 seconds or so to encourage the sugar to dissolve throughly.
7. Add the condensed milk and heat for a further two minutes before whisking the ingredients throughly with a balloon whisk. Heat the caramel for a further 5 minutes, giving it a good whisk after each 30 seconds.
8. Drop a little bit of the caramel into a glass of cold water – if the mixture can be rolled into soft ball then it’s ready to be used, otherwise it may need another 30 seconds in the microwave.
9. Stir through the sea salt and then smooth the caramel in an even layer over the shortbread base. Leave to set.
10. For the chocolate layer, gently melt the chocolate in a heatproof bowl over a pan of simmering water. Pour the chocolate over the top of the shortbread and caramel layers and smooth out with a palate knife, then leave to set before cutting the Shortbread into equally sized pieces.
I love seeing your take on my recipes, so remember to share a snap of your Shortbread over on Facebook, twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #titchytonbakes.