Friday, January 15, 2010

Twix Bars

I'm sure you've seen these around the blogosphere lately under the name of "Millionaire Bars" or the like. I was intrigued by the fact that bloggers had claimed that they tasted like a better version of Twix Bars, so I decided to make them even more like those candy bars by dipping the shortbread and dulce de leche/caramel filling in tempered chocolate.
Before making these, I had never tempered chocolate, which explains why my chocolate bars look so "rugged" and rough around the edges (literally!). They tasted pretty good, and I was excited about how the chocolate looked after chilling them in the freezer.

There are many tutorials online about tempering chocolate, but tempering is basically the process of heating up chocolate to about 115-120 degrees Farenheit (depends on the type of chocolate), "seeding" the mixture with unmelted chocolate to reduce it to 80 degrees, and then heating the mixture back up to about 85-88 degrees, and keeping it there while dipping the filling into the chocolate.
This process is supposed to yield a chocolate coating that is shiny and produces a crack. It is a tricky process, I found out. The temperature can go up quite quickly, and you want to make sure you don't add any liquid to the chocolate, or it will seize (that includes any wet utensils you use to stir or dip the chocolate!). For my first attempt, I hope I did pretty well. I would like to practice a bit more with a better chocolate then Ghiradelli chocolate, but I think these were just fine for my purposes (i.e., for basic, quotidian consumption).

The recipe for the filling is below; the chocolate portion of the recipe is different from the one I used for these bars. You can take a glance at this video to learn more about tempering chocolate. Use milk or dark chocolate for these bars. Enjoy!
Millionaire Bars
adapted from kristindmiller.com who got it from Joy of Cooking

Shortbread Crust:
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, room temp
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350* and lightly grease a 9 x 9 baking pan. Cream the butter and sugar until fluffy. Add vanilla and salt. Stir in the flour just until the dough begins to come together in walnut-sized chunks. Press the dough into the prepared pan and bake 20 minutes or until golden brown around the edges. Cool completely. Begin the filling as soon as the crust goes into the oven.

Caramel Filling:
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk (I used my leftover, crockpot dulce de leche)

Pour the milk into a heavy saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring often, 60-90 minutes, until golden brown. Alternately, cook the caramel in a double boiler, covered, stirring occasionally (every 15 minutes or so). The only difference in the methods is the amount of attention given the caramel and the tools needed. When thick and deep golden, spread caramel evenly over cooled crust and refrigerate until caramel is cool and set.

Chocolate Topping (THIS RECIPE IS NOT FOR TEMPERING CHOCOLATE!):
6 ounces good-quality dark or semi-sweet chocolate (I used Ghiradelli)
1 Tablespoon butter
Coarse sea salt (optional)

Melt the chocolate and butter slowly over low heat and spread over the cooled caramel layer. Sprinkle sea salt over the chocolate. Refrigerate until set. Slice and enjoy. Store the bars, covered, in the fridge.

If you decide to temper the chocolate, all you need is the type of chocolate you prefer, such as milk or dark chocolate. Avoid using chocolate chips.

17 comments:

  1. Fantastic idea! I think these look great and thanks for the link. :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. These look even better than twix bars!! I didn't think that was possible. way to go!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Yum. These look amazing. Great job tempering chocolate. I find it can be very challenging.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I used to loooove Twix bars. I bet the homemade version is so much better.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Whhhooooaaaa... These look incredible.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I did happen to spot these on foodgawker last week and put them on my "to make" list. It's funny how something will catch on in the food-blogging world and you'll see tons of that one thing on foodgawker for a while. I like that you made these look like Twix--great idea. So what did you think--taste like a twix? I'm thinking they were probably much better!

    ReplyDelete
  7. You know, Memoria, if I had a million dollars, I would buy one (okay, four)of these delicious looking chocolate bars from you right now! Melted chocolate is to sweets as Lawry's seasoning is to savory foods--it makes everything pop with good flavor!

    I think your pictures are delightful and tempting :o) Oh, can you save a bar or two for me? It might be a while before I can get that million dollars!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Yummy! Twix bars are one of my favorite candy bars. I'd eat myself into a sugar coma!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I'm bookmarking these as they look amazing. (Yup, fan of Twix!)

    ReplyDelete
  10. We love Twix bars! I've seen recipes for Millionaire Shortbread, but didn't realize it tasted like Twix. It makes sense. I should try it.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Those look so delicious. Wow!

    ReplyDelete
  12. OH WOW! I've got to try these... thanks for the inspiration!!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Tempered chocolate? You go girl. I'm not fond of chocolate but I know a young man that I'm fond of who loves Twix bars. I'm thinking a batch of these would make me super star(mom)!
    ~ingrid

    ReplyDelete
  14. Your bars look great! I like that you made them into round-end stick shapes like Twix bars.

    I will definitely have to get over my intimidation of tempering chocolate.

    I will be attempting a mock Twix bar recipe this week, so hopefully it turns out well. Either way, I'll be documenting my results and experience.

    ReplyDelete

English: Feel free to write a comment in your own language!
Español: ¡Siente libre de dejar un comentario en tu propio idioma!
Italiano: Sentitevi liberi di scrivere un commento nella vostra lingua!
Português: Fique à vontade de deixar um comentário no seu próprio idioma!
OR français, 한글, or another language!

Related Posts with Thumbnails