Caramel Chocolate ‘Millionaire’ Squares – crunchy biscuit base, soft caramel filling in the centre, topped with a layer of chocolate – what’s not to like?
It’s known by many names across the world – caramel shortbread, caramel shortcake, caramel squares, millionaires’ shortbread, millionaires’ slice, caramel slice, etc. It’s actually very similar to the Twix chocolate bar 🙂
The recipe may look daunting because of the multiple components, but it’s actually simple and easy to follow. You don’t even need a candy thermometer for caramel – it’s a cheats recipe with condensed milk, similar to the yummy dulce de leche. Using dark chocolate for the top layer helps balance the sweetness of the caramel layer. Adding a little butter gives the chocolate layer a shine without affecting the texture. You can use more chocolate and less caramel if you like that way 🙂 You can also use milk chocolate instead of dark.
There’s minimal baking involved here – just enough to set the biscuit layer and the caramel layer.
The recipe uses an 8″x8″ square pan and gives 16 squares.
Biscuit Base Layer
100g unsalted butter, cold and cut into cubes
170g all-purpose flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
50g granulated white sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tbsp cold water
400g condensed milk (1 can)
200g unsalted butter
100g granulated white sugar
4 tbsp golden syrup (or corn syrup)
1/2 tsp salt
200g dark chocolate, chopped
1/2 tbsp butter (about 8g)
Biscuit Base Layer
1. Preheat the oven to 180C. Prepare an 8″x8″ square pan with butter and parchment paper.
2. In a large bowl, add flour, baking powder and salt. Rub in the butter with your fingertips gently till you get sand like crumbs. Add sugar and water(water is to just get the crumbs together) and mix until you get a mixture that clumps together.
3. Pour the mixture on the base of the pan and press it into an even layer, especially the edges.
4. Bake it at 180C for 15 min or till the edges start turning slightly brown. Take out from the oven, but keep the oven on.
1. While the base is in the oven, in a heavy bottom saucepan, add condensed milk, sugar, salt, golden syrup and gently mix. Add butter and start cooking on a low heat.
2. The mixture will start to boil and thicken. Keep stirring with a heatproof spatula! In about 10-15 minutes it will turn into a lovely amber caramel colour. (You might see some brown bits – that’s the sugar that got caramelized before dissolving. Most of them will melt in, but if there are some large chunks, remove it to get an even caramel.)
3. Remove the saucepan from heat and slowly pour the caramel over the cooked biscuit base. Spread it evenly with the spatula.
4. Bake it in 180C oven for 6-8 minutes just to cook it slightly and set it. Take it out of the oven and let it cool completely.
1. Once your caramel layer is cooled, melt the chocolate in double boiler (a heatproof bowl set over a pan of shallow simmering water) or in a microwave. Add the butter and mix till it melts.
2. Pour the chocolate over cooled caramel layer and spread it evenly with a palette knife. Let it cool completely until set (about an hour).
3. Cover it and refrigerate for 3-4 hours for the layers to set. Once out of the fridge, keep it on the platform for 10-15 minutes to thaw a little and then using a sharp knife, cut it into 16 squares. Clean the knife in between each cut to ensure clean slices 🙂
4. These can be stored in the refrigerator for about a week in an airtight container. Enjoy 🙂
Recipe inspired by Donal Skehan