Wednesday, July 13, 2011
Virginia's Salt River Bars
So the other day I was browsing through some of my favorite blogs and I found a post on Bakergirl about these delicious looking things she described as "Salt River Bars".
I was instantly intrigued.
I mean, I love salt.
Almost as much as I love butter.
And guess what?
THIS HAS ALL THREE!
But did I mention that my absolute favorite candy
in the ENTIRE WORLD
I adore caramel...
I would lick caramel off of cardboard.
Did you guess it?
THIS HAS CARAMEL TOO!
Yup. This is an absolute, sure fire, Virginia pleasing dessert.
Now, Bakergirl's recipe has peanut butter chips in it. But my dear friend Kaylee has a massive sweet tooth and happens to be deathly allergic to peanuts.. So I knew if I made a decadent and rich dessert like this she was going to be all over it.
And I really, REALLY didn't want her to puff up and force me to jab her with an epi pen...
Because I love her.
And because I am terrified of needles and junk.
But mostly because I love her.
And allergies aren't any fun.
So anyway, as you can guess, I came up with a back up for the Salt River Bars.
I changed a few things actually.
And I am pleased with the results.
So I hope you enjoy my version!!!!
But if you aren't deathly allergic to peanuts and would like to try them as they are intended to be, go here.
Virginia's Salt River Bars
1/2 box Club crackers
1 cup butter (I had one stick margarine and had to borrow a stick of butter from a neighbor, but margarine or butter will work fine)
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 cup butterscotch OR peanut butter chips (optional)
1 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips
2 tbsp vegetable oil
Line a small pan or baking dish with parchment paper. Bakergirl used foil, but I shuddered at the thought of foil sticking to the gooey caramel and chomping on little bits of foil...
So parchment it is. Waxed paper would work fine too since you aren't baking it.
Next, make a layer on top of the parchment paper with club crackers.
I used an odd sized dish because it was the first thing I grabbed. It allowed me to make three rows of four crackers. Sprinkle 1/3 of the chips (if you are using them) on top of the crackers.
Melt the butter and the brown sugar together in a sauce pan on medium. Stir frequently and cook until bubbling constantly. Keep stirring and cooking until it turns into a creamy caramel sauce. This should be about 3-4 minutes. Don't over cook or it may become separated, too hard, or burnt tasting. Make sure to keep the heat at medium and not higher or you will burn the sugar and get a yucky taste.
Pour 1/3 of the mixture over the crackers and chips, then top with another layer of crackers and chips, 1/3 caramel, another layer of crackers and chips, the rest of the caramel.
Top with a final layer of crackers.
Put the chocolate chips and oil into a glass bowl and microwave at 30 second intervals until melted. Stir frequently. It should really only take about a minute.
Notice the kids' spoon I used to stir it with? Someone else noticed too and wanted a taste...
So let your adorable little helper have a taste of the chocolate topping, just to make sure it's tasty...
Pour all over the top layer and use the back of a spoon to spread it out evenly.
Pop it into the fridge for just a minute or two to let it set just a bit, then pull it out and sprinkle it with sea salt.
Then pop it back in the fridge for about 20 minutes, just so the chocolate is set enough to score with a knife, but not hard enough that you have to work hard at it.
Then using a knife, score lines in it where you will want to cut it. Bakergirl did squares, but I just followed the lines of the club crackers and did rectangles. It worked super well because each stack of crackers was it's own cookie and cut down on extra crumbs.
You won't need to cut all the way through the bar, just press the knife down through the chocolate so that when it is all the way set you will be able to cut the bars easily.
Put back in the fridge for an hour or so until fully chilled, then cut and store in a tupperware container in the fridge.
WARNING: Highly addictive but VERY VERY sweet.
I will admit that the butterscotch chips make the bars INCREDIBLY sweet. I think next time I will make them without any chips, or perhaps dark chocolate chips.
The chips really aren't necessary: the star of the show really is the caramel... The chocolate and salt on top just help highlight the creamy sweetness of the decadent caramel.
Is your mouth watering?
Yeah I thought so.