On Sunday, I gave my family (husband and two children, aged 6 and 7) a choice; sweet or savoury. All three of them picked savoury and wanted me to make sausage rolls, which of course, I did. However, I couldn’t help but feel a little upset. I’m a self-confessed sugar junkie and I wanted sweet! So inspired by my client working-lunch last Friday, tonight when I got home from work (unexpectedly early), I knocked up a tray of Nutty Caramel Slices.
190g Butter, chopped
85g Caster sugar
250g Plain Flour
4 large squirts of Golden Syrup
3 Tablespoons of Caster Sugar
1 x 397g Condensed Milk
Approx, 250g of mixed nuts and dried fruit (I bought the Waitrose one)
Small handful of salt flakes
WHAT TO DO:
a) Line a square tin (mine was 9in x 9in) with baking paper.
b) Cream the sugar and butter together for the base until smooth. The mix should be soft, but slightly crumbly. Press this in to the bottom of the tin. I smoothed over with the back of a metal spoon. Put in a pre-warmed over (at 180C/160C fan) and bake for 20 minutes – the colour should just start to turn a lovely golden. Once baked, leave to cool.
c) Meanwhile melt the milk, butter, sugar and syrup until it reaches boiling point and the sugar has dissolved. Keep stirring.
d) Once the sugar has dissolved, whack up the heat and stir constantly for about six minutes. Once the mixture has turned a darker, golden colour and thick in texture it’s ready. Pour the mixture on the top of the shortbread base.
e) Whilst the mixture is still warm, scatter sea salt flakes on the top of the caramel. Don’t shy away from the salt – I could have added double to mine!
f) For the final part, add the nut and dried fruit mixture (I always think pistachios add a great colour to things like this!) and bung in the fridge for a couple of hours until set.
Now could you make this a whole lot easier and less effort by buying Carnation Caramel. However, I didn’t have any in my cupboard so I did this the old fashioned way. Truth be told, I burnt the caramel slightly (easily done), but nothing about these little beauties tasted burnt!