Smoked Almond Chocolate Shortbread
A rich, buttery crust is topped with almonds, a dense, fudge-like chocolate and
a sprinkling of sea salt.
- 1/2 cup (2 ounces) smoked (or roasted) almonds
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) butter, softened (plus additional for pan)
cup light brown sugar, packed
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 11 ounces (about 2 cups) milk chocolate,
chopped or chips
- 1 1/2 cups sugar
- 1/4 cup light corn syrup
- 1/4 cup water
- 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon sea salt or smoked salt (optional)
- Shortbread: Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line 9 x 9-inch pan with parchment
paper or foil; butter the interior of the paper or foil.
- Grind smoked almonds in food processor until the consistency of coarse corn meal.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together ground almonds, flour, salt and cinnamon; set
- In a large bowl, beat butter, brown sugar and almond extract with electric mixer
until light and fluffy.
- Add flour mixture in two batches mixing until crumbly, but sticky dough forms.
- Press dough evenly into bottom of prepared pan.
- Bake until golden brown, about 25 to 30 minutes.
- Let cool completely on wire rack.
- Chocolate Caramel: Place chocolate in medium glass or stainless steel bowl; set
- In medium saucepan, combine sugar, corn syrup and water. Cook mixture over medium
heat 10 to 12 minutes, until mixture coats the back of a wooden spoon.
- Remove from heat. Add butter, cream and salt.
- Return to heat and simmer over medium heat, stirring until smooth. Simmer 2 to
- Pour mixture over chocolate; let stand 2 minutes. Stir until smooth; let stand
to cool slightly, about 10 minutes.
- Pour mixture over shortbread.
- Allow to cool about 30 minutes and then refrigerate overnight or at least 5 hours.
- Sprinkle with sea salt or smoked salt, if desired.
- To cut, run a knife around edges of pan to loosen the parchment or foil; carefully
lift the paper out of pan. Cut bars with knife dipped in hot water and remove paper
- Store bars in airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
Yield: 2 dozen bars
Reprinted with permission from
the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board.