Some recipes you see and want to try. Other recipes you see and know you need to try.
These fell into the need to try.
And you need to try them too.
Seriously, unbelievably good!
I first spotted them in the canapé section of Great British Chefs and as a girl rather partial to a slice millionaires shortbread I knew it wouldn’t be long before I found a reason to make them.
With the prospect of 50 guests coming to our drinks party I knew that time had arrived. After all if you’re going to go to the effort it might as well be for a great number of people.
As with lots of patisserie no individual element takes much time- it’s a matter of a little today, a little more the next- and these are no exception. My concern over making my own dulce de leche was ill founded. As someone very prone to making a mess I was sure I would explode the simmering tin of condensed milk, splattering hot caramel all over the kitchen, mostly down my front, but miraculously I succeeded with very little mess! Success!
Successful and rather satisfying. After 4.5hours in a simmering pan of water the condensed milk is transformed into the most delicious, thick and scrumptious caramel.
But of course I am me and the mess did come- I don’t think I’ll ever be able to get through a cooking session with the kitchen completely unscathed.
The mess came in the form of unsettable chocolate jelly. So unwilling to set I put the tin into the fridge in a bin liner, so defiant of hardening it had to be poured off the next morning and the mousse dabbed down with kitchen towels but just so darn tasty looking that how ever hard it was going to be it was something that was going to be done!
Hey ho- we live and learn! Mess cause no.1 not waterproofing the tin- leaving gaps at the corners of something liquid was about to be poured into wasn’t my smartest move. Mess cause no.2 failed gelatine- I can only assume the water the gelatine was softening in warmed up enough in the summer heat to melt it so by the time it reached the chocolate mix it had lost all it’s setability.
Despite my best efforts this really is quite simple and keeps well in the fridge so make extra and eat it all week.
Makes approximately 250 1.5cm squares or serves 30 in 4x5cm squares
Prepare the tin
20 x 30 x 4+ cm tin (I have this resizeable one which I love)
If the sides of your tin have gaps in them waterproof it with cling film. line the tin with baking paper leaving at least 10cm of paper rising up all sides to help you lift it out
- Crush the biscuits to a fine powder in a food processor or in a bag with a rolling pin
- Melt the butter and allow it to cool
- Press into the bottom of your tin and refrigerate for at least 30mins to set
This step includes making your own dulche de leche. It is very easy but if you would rather buy it skip the first two steps and buy two 400g jars of dulche de leche rather than the condensed milk.
2 x 400g tins of condensed milk
250g golden syrup
5 leaves of gelatine
500ml double cream
- Simmer the tins in a pan of water, lying down with the water just covering them, with the lid on for 4.5hrs
- Remove from the heat, carefully take the tops of the tins off and spoon into a bowl
- Add the butter and the golden syrup to the newly made dulche de leche and place over a saucepan of simmering water to melt. Remove from the saucepan and whisk to emulsify
- Soften the gelatine in cold water for 5mins, squeeze to remove excess water and add to the warm caramel sauce one at a time making sure each one has dissolved before adding the next (If the sauce isn’t warm enough to do this heat it gently until it is). Allow to cool to room temperature
- When the sauce has cooled whip the cream to soft peaks and fold it into the toffee sauce a spoonful at a time. (Always fold the thinner mixture into the thicker to avoid getting lumps. If your cream is thicker than your sauce fold the sauce into it rather than the other way round)
- Carefully spoon onto the base and put back in the fridge until set (at least 4 hours)
90g caster sugar
60g cocoa powder
6 leaves of gelatine
- Gently heat the sugar and water in a pan until the sugar has all dissolved. Add the cocoa, bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 5mins
- Soften the gelatine in cold water for 5mins, squeeze to remove excess water and stir into the chocolate mix to dissolve
- Leave to cool to room temperature and then pour over the mousse
- Pop back into the fridge to set for another couple of hours
Serve in bite sized squares for canapés or larger pieces for a pudding
This keeps well in the fridge so leftovers won’t be wasted!