Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Tuesdays With Dorie: Caramel Crunch Bars

This week's Tuesdays With Dorie selection is Caramel Crunch Bars, courtesy of Whitney of What’s left on the table?

A big thank you to Whitney for choosing this recipe - I've been eyeing it for months! The photo of these cookie bars looked so delectable in the cookbook that I couldn't believe no one had chosen it yet. I was beginning to get impatient! In fact, I almost made it last month but ran out of time.

I'm glad I waited, because I was able to buy Heath bits (a main ingredient in this recipe) during my recent trip to the States. If I hadn't made the trip, I would have substituted with Skor bits. I thought Heath bits would be similar to Skor bits, but as you can see below, they're very different. Heath bits are on the left.

They're both labelled as toffee bits, but Heath Bits have almond in them, as well, which makes them taste a lot like peanut brittle. And I like that using them made my bars look more like Dorie's.

These cookies are made of three components: a cookie base, a layer of chocolate, and a generous sprinkling of Heath bits. The cookie base was so delicious - it tasted like toffee shortbread but had the added complexity of cinnamon, instant coffee powder, and chunks of chocolate. However, it also called for two sticks of butter. I shuddered at the thought of using half a pound of butter in this recipe, so instead I halved it and baked the batter in a 8"x8" pan as well as a loaf pan. it works out quite well, although I think my batter was a bit thicker than it was supposed to be.

The chocolate and Heath bits, I think it goes without saying, were very tasty. They made these cookies taste (and look) like a chocolate bar - I think that was the point, and it was very well-executed.

I can't wait to make these again! Visit Whitney of What’s left on the table? for the recipe. I'll be participating in Tuesdays With Dorie again on March 10, when I'll be making Lemon Cup Custard.


Pamela February 24, 2009 at 7:41:00 AM EST  

Looks great, Kait. I didn't realize the difference in color between the Heath and the Skor bits. Interesting. Great job!

Amanda February 24, 2009 at 8:54:00 AM EST  

These look perfect, nice job! Mine were a bit crisp, but still tasty :)

doughmesstic February 24, 2009 at 9:04:00 AM EST  

What pretty pictures! Yum.

vibi February 24, 2009 at 10:25:00 AM EST  

Ahhhh... I'm sold to Skor. Exactly like you say, I find Heath tastes a lot more like peanut brittle, which is good nonetheless but... one can get that kinda taste in peanut brittle, so. Skor... is just like rich yummy toffee... and I'm a freak for caramel!

What a great picture you took, Kait!
Very well done bars!

chocolatechic February 24, 2009 at 1:02:00 PM EST  

Skor bits would have tasted just as good.

Yours look fabulous.

TeaLady February 24, 2009 at 3:15:00 PM EST  

Oh, those do look yummy!!! i never noticed about the skor and heath. Guess I was too busy eating them and not looking at them.

Anonymous February 24, 2009 at 3:32:00 PM EST  

Your crunch bars look wonderfully delicious.

Jules Someone February 24, 2009 at 4:55:00 PM EST  

These bars look great. Thanks for the side-by-side comparison of the bits. Who knew!

Kaitlin February 24, 2009 at 7:17:00 PM EST  

Thanks, everyone!

Jess February 24, 2009 at 8:36:00 PM EST  

Your bars look great - and I think Skor bits would have been delicious on these.

farah February 24, 2009 at 8:36:00 PM EST  

These look fantastic! I actually used skor bits. You can't get heath or skor in singapore but a canadian friend brought skor back for me. I'm glad you like these :)

Jaime February 24, 2009 at 8:38:00 PM EST  

they look great! good job! i didn't know heath bits had almond in them?

n.o.e February 24, 2009 at 9:55:00 PM EST  

I'm so glad that these lived up to your expectations! Yours certainly look just like Dorie's. And thanks for the product comparison. I like toffee with and without almonds!

mike February 24, 2009 at 10:36:00 PM EST  

Kait - these look fantastic. I found out there's two types of bits two - so I made two batches, just to compare. I like Dorie's choice personally. Nice photography and delicious-looking bars!

MaryBeth February 24, 2009 at 11:08:00 PM EST  

Very good looking bars, perfect picture Kait.

Peggy February 25, 2009 at 8:47:00 AM EST  

Kait - your bars look fabulous. I think I like Skor bits better, actually, but I used Heath. I need to try these again and maybe use bitter choc instead of the milk choc. Great job on yours. Thanks for stopping by my blog!

Teanna February 25, 2009 at 9:03:00 AM EST  

Glad you were able to get the Heath bits! They look great!!!

Kayte February 25, 2009 at 9:18:00 AM EST  

Those are gorgeous...very nice job. I have to get over here more often as your recipes look wonderful and very inspiring! Great job on the bars...I will be back!

matty February 25, 2009 at 10:58:00 AM EST  

This looks very tasty! I can't wait to have some tomorrow!

Leslie March 1, 2009 at 12:14:00 PM EST  

I've been using so much butter lately, I bet the cows are begging for a day off!

I love the way your bars turned out! I think Skor bits would have been delicious as well.

Steph March 7, 2009 at 12:12:00 PM EST  

Your pictures look so good! The thought of all that butter freaked me out a little too. I reduced the butter, not as much as you did and still found them greasy. Next time I make these I'm going to halve it.

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