Toblerone Shortbread and Caramel-Almond Dream Bars
Last week I told you about @caffeinated_mom , my fellow mlogger (my term for mom blogger – don’t you love it?). Amanda and I have been busy in our kitchens working on a yummy, first of its kind, Recipe Exchange.
We chose our favourite Christmas recipes and shared them with each other so we could re-glutenize and de-glutenize. It was a fun and challenging little adventure.
I gave Amanda my Caramel-Almond Dream Bar recipe – which I am also sharing with you in this Christmas Shortbread-packed post. And she made the bars with gluten. Check out her amazing results (the pictures alone will make your mouth water) on her blog The Best Mommy On The Block .
Amanda gave me her Toblerone Shortbread recipe. And OH. MY. GOODNESS. It is so yummy. Sadly, my version is not vegan (I tried, my lovely Vegan Chicks, I tried). I went to my Health Food Store and looked high and low for a vegan alternative to Toblerone; there just wasn’t anything that jumped out at me. But I hope you’ll try it and report back. Maybe, Vegan Chicks, you already have a yummy chocolate that you use? Try that.
You must try this recipe. If you want it a la gluten, check out Amanda’s blog . If you want it She Let Them Eat Cake style, read on. It’s delicious! The Toblerone Shortbread had that yummy shortbread taste, you know the one, we’ve talked about it before . And how can you go wrong with Toblerone, right?
TOBLERONE SHORTBREAD original recipe courtesy of Amanda G
3/4 c. unsalted organic butter, softened
1/2 c. icing (powdered) sugar – I made my own by grinding cane sugar with my immersion blender (see the pictures below).
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/4 tsp. sea salt
1 1/2 cups of my gluten-free mix (I usually add a little extra GF flour when I’m de-glutenizing a recipe)
3/4 c. coarsely chopped Toblerone bar (thank goodness it’s gluten-free)
Preheat oven to 300˚F.
In a medium sized bowl using an electric mixer, beat butter until smooth. Gradually beat in sugar until light and fluffy. Add vanilla and salt until combined.
Using a wooden spoon, stir in flour just until mixed. Stir in 1/4 c. of the chopped Toblerone.
Scrape dough into an ungreased 8″x8″ pan. Lightly flour your fingers and pat mixture to an even thickness. Using a fork, lightly prick dough every inch. Bake in lower third of the oven until edges are deep golden and centre is lightly golden, 40-50 minutes. Note this timing is longer than Amanda’s original recipe.
Let the shortbread cool on a rack. Using a serrated knife, cut into fingers, squares or diamonds. I tried a few shapes here. I was very careful and couldn’t be too fancy since working with GF shortbread is different than working with shortbread with wheat. Next time I make it (probably this week, actually, since they were so yummy and since it’s Christmastime) I will be a little more adventurous with my cutting and dipping.
Melt the remaining Toblerone and dip 1/2 of each cookie into the melted chocolate and place on a rack to cool. Store in an airtight container, in a cool place or the refrigerator, for up to 2 weeks. Umm, mine didn’t last long enough to store in the refrigerator. But that’s a good sign. Right?
I gave Amanda my new Caramel-Almond Dream Bar recipe and she loved it. You will too, trust me. We’re essentially giving you FOUR great recipes today (2 gluten-free recipes and 2 gluten-full recipes). So Happy Holidays. Please let us both know if you try these delicious little gems.
CARAMEL-ALMOND DREAM BARS original gluten-free recipe
Preheat the oven to 335 degrees. Grease an 8×8 pan.
Toast 1 and 1/2 cups of sliced almonds (I usually eyeball the almonds; it’s kind of a personal preference thing).
For the base:
1 cup vegan butter at room temperature.
½ cup cane sugar
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/3 cup gluten-free flour mix (chickpea, sorghum, and tapioca flours)
2/3 cup almond meal
4 tbsp brown rice flour
¼ tsp sea salt
½ tsp cinnamon
In a large bowl beat the butter and sugar until whipped. Add the vanilla and mix well.
In a separate bowl, mix the GF flour mix, almond meal, brown rice flour, sea salt, and cinnamon until well combined.
Gradually add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Mix until just combined.
Spread into prepared pan and bake at 335 degrees for 35-40 minutes. Check with a cake tester before removing from oven. Let cool on a wire rack.
While your base is baking, prepare your caramel.
¾ cup soy milk
¾ cup cane sugar
1/3 cup brown rice syrup
1 tbsp arrowroot powder
1 tbsp hot water
2 tbsp vegan butter
Place soy milk, cane sugar, and brown rice syrup in a saucepan and whisk to combine. Cook on medium heat, whisking regularly, for 3 minutes.
In a small bowl, whisk arrowroot powder and water. Add to the saucepan. Cook this mixture until it thickens (stirring constantly) for approximately 20 minutes. You want your caramel to be a little bit runny.
Remove from heat and add vegan butter. Let cool for approximately 15 minutes.
Pour slightly cooled caramel on top of your base. Cover with toasted almonds and enjoy! Both of these babies will be a hit with your gluten-free friends, your dairy-loving friends, and your gluten-loving friends. Trust me! Check out Amanda’s amazing pictures. They totally do this bar justice.