(photo by my very talented friend Steev)
I don't eat a lot of candy. Give me a nice dark chocolate bar from Europe or some chocolate covered almonds, occasionally I will even eat a Reese's Peanut Butter Cup or a Twix bar. Lately I have seen many people blog about making homemade candy bars. Homemade Reese's, Snickers, Mounds, Butterfinger and many, many postings of homemade Twix. A Twix bar is basically a layer of shortbread cookie with a layer of caramel that is covered completely in milk chocolate. Not your typical candy bar and I was pretty sure it would be more like a cookie if it were homemade. I love trying new cookies and that is how I approached this task, as though I were trying a new cookie recipe. I love shortbread, I love caramel, and I love chocolate! Basically, even if it doesn't taste like a Twix bar, it is bound to be delicious with all of those components!
First task....find a recipe. After reading through several, I decided to try the recipe from instructables.com. The recipe was easy to follow and there were a lot of pictures to guide me. I liked the shortbread cookie recipe but I will probably try my regular recipe next time I make these, only because I think the shortbread should be crunchier and these cookies were a little on the soft side.
The only other issue was how to deal with the chocolate. Should I dip the entire cookie in chocolate so that it is just like a Twix bar or should I drizzle chocolate over the top? I really couldn't decide and ended up doing half dipped and half drizzled. I think they looked fabulous drizzled! Plus....it was easier than dipping each of them. However, all of the dipped cookies held their shape and were easy to store and transfer, while all of the drizzled cookies were oozing with caramel. As they sat a bit, the caramel slid down the sides of the cookies. They still look great but are a little messier to handle. You choose which way you would like to make yours, I will probably still go with the drizzle!
Homemade Twix Bars
1 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
2 cups all purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 tablespoons (1oz) milk
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Cover baking sheet in parchment paper and set aside.
Cream butter and sugar together until fluffy. In a separate bowl, mix flour, baking powder and salt. Over slow speed, add flour mixture to butter mixture just until blended. Mix in vanilla and milk. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Roll dough directly on parchment paper and bake until edges become golden and cookie is set, about 20-25 minutes. Set aside to cool
14-15 ounce bag of soft caramels
2 tablespoons cream
In a small saucepan, melt caramels with cream over low heat. Stir often until smooth. Spread evenly over cooled shortbread crust. Let caramel set completely. When it has set, cut into desired shapes. I cut mine into 1” by 2 ½” bars.
12 ounces milk or dark chocolate , chopped
1 teaspoon shortening
Place chocolate and shortening in microwave safe bowl and melt over 50% power, stirring ever 30 seconds until chocolate is melted. Dip bars in chocolate and place on wax paper to set or drizzle chocolate over each of the bars and allow to set.