With Easter just around the corner, what better time is there to whip up a tooth achingly indulgent treat?
This melt-in-the mouth, peanut butter millionaire’s shortbread, has the perfect balance of salty sweetness that will keep your hand firmly in the biscuit tin. I’ll let you decide whether that’s a good or a bad thing.
Peanut butter millionaire shortbread
Makes 16 squares / Hands on time 50 mins / Total time 50 mins plus chilling / V
20x20cm deep loose bottomed square tin
For the shortbread:
125g unsalted butter at room temperature + extra for greasing 50g golden caster sugar + plus extra for dusting 1 tsp vanilla extract 175g plain flour 50g salted peanuts
For the peanut caramel:
100g unsalted butter 75g light brown sugar 25g dark Muscovado 397g can condensed milk 3 tbs crunchy peanut butter Pinch sea salt flakes 100g good quality dark chocolate
Step 1: Make the shortbread
1. Preheat your oven to 180°C/160°C fan/350°F/gas mark 4. Line the tin with baking paper and grease well with butter. Put to one side.
2. In a large bowl, cream together the butter, sugar and vanilla extract until light and fluffy (you can do this with a wooden spoon or use a standing mixer). Once smooth and creamy sift in the flour.
3. Using a wooden spoon or a standing mixer, combine together until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Mix in the salted peanuts and turn out into the centre of the tin. Spread out to the edges of the tin evenly using a spoon, before using your finger-tips to press it down until you have a firm biscuit base.
4. Bake for 20 mins or until the surface is slightly golden. Leave to cool fully in the tin.
Step 2: Make the peanut caramel
1. Place the butter, both sugars, peanut butter and the can of condensed milk in a medium sized pan and heat gently until the sugar dissolves. Continually stir with a wooden spoon making sure no sugar sticks to the bottom of the pan.
2. Turn the heat up to medium high, stirring continuously and bring to the boil. Once boiling, lower the heat back down to low and stir continuously for 5-10 mins or until the mixture has thickened slightly. Remove from the heat and pour over the cooled shortbread. Sprinkle over a pinch of sea salt flakes and leave to set and cool fully.
3. Make the topping by melting the chocolate slowly in a bowl over a pan of hot water. Pour the melted chocolate over the cold caramel and manoeuvre the tin with your hands to allow the chocolate to spread evenly and to the edges. Leave to set in the fridge.
4. To turn out the shortbread, use a sharp knife to score around the edges of the shortbread (it can help to use a hot knife so carefully run it under hot water and dry before scoring and turning out). Cut into squares (again using a hot sharp knife) and serve.
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