Salted Pretzel & Pecan Chocolate Bars

Denise says:

  • I was inspired by this year’s Great British Bake Off (GBBO) programme to write this recipe as one of the challenges was to create a coated biscuit bar. My recipe cuts up beautifully and makes delicious lunch box snacks! These are very moreish – the caramel filing is quite addictive!
  •  I have made them vegan too!
  • Preparation Time: 1 hour plus chilling
  • Cooking Time: 30 minutes plus chilling
  • Makes: 12 pieces

Ingredients:

  • For the shortbread base
  • 180g non dairy margarine -cut into cubes
  • 180g plain flour
  • 50g sugar
  • Pinch salt flakes
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla bean paste
  • For the Pecan Chocolate Filling
  • 200g pecans
  • 300g sugar
  • 200ml non dairy whipping cream
  • 100g non dairy margarine
  • 1 teaspoon salt flakes
  • For the Topping
  • 50g dark chocolate
  • 50g salted pretzels
  • You will also need a sugar thermometer or probe

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 160C Fan/ 180C
  2. Line and grease a 22cm square tin so the baking paper comes up the sides.
  3. For the shortbread, put the flour, sugar and salt in a food processor. Add the margarine and vanilla and whizz it to form breadcrumbs.
  4. Transfer to the cake tin, then use your hands to press into an even layer.
  5. Chill for 30 minutes. Prick the base with a fork and then bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown.
  6. Leave to cool.
  7. For the caramel, place the pecans on a tray, toast for about 10 minutes at 200C. then roughly chop. Set aside.
  8. Put the sugar in the saucepan and cook without stirring until melted and caramelised. Take off the heat and add the cream slowly ( it may spit). Stir in the butter and salt.
  9. Return to the heat and cook stirring until the caramel reaches 116*C on a sugar thermometer or probe.
  10. Immediately add the pecans and mix briefly.
  11.  Pour over the shortbread, spread evenly with a spatula and set aside for 4 hours or overnight to cool.
  12. For the topping, melt the chocolate over a bowl of simmering water, then drizzle or pipe the chocolate over the caramel. Press the pretzels into the chocolate to finish. Leave to set before cutting into bars.
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