Monday, October 13, 2014

Pecan Toffee Bars with Ganache

These are decadent and delightful and a big hit around here with my friends and family. Rich and wonderful and easy to make!  This is a keeper my friends.

Pecan Toffee Bars with Ganache 

Non stick spray
1 pound refrigerated Pillsbury sugar cookie dough
2 (1.4-ounces) chocolate-toffee candy bars, coarsely chopped, ( I use Skor Candy bars)
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 cup Ghirardelli semisweet chocolate chips
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 cup (8 ounces) mascarpone cheese, room temperature
1/4 cup toasted pecans
2 (14-ounce) cans sweetened condensed milk
2 tablespoons butter

Position an oven rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 7 by 10 3/4-inch nonstick baking pan with vegetable cooking spray. Lay a 6 by 18-inch piece of parchment paper in the pan, allowing the excess paper to overhang the sides. Spray the parchment paper lightly with cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, combine the cookie dough, 1/2 of the chopped chocolate-toffee candy pieces and vanilla extract. Using damp fingers, gently press the dough into the prepared pan. Using the tines of a fork, prick the dough all over. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes until the crust is lightly browned. Cool for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium-low heat, melt butter and then pour in condensed milk. Slowly bring the mixture to a boil, stirring continuously. Continue stirring over the heat until mixture becomes thick and a light brown caramel color, about 15 minutes. Pour the caramel over the cooked shortbread and spread evenly using a rubber spatula. Sprinkle top of caramel with chopped, toasted pecans and chopped toffee bar. Set aside to cool.

Place the chocolate chips and vegetable oil in a medium bowl. Place the bowl over a pan of simmering water and stir until the chocolate has melted. Cool the chocolate mixture for 10 minutes. Whisk in the mascarpone cheese until the mixture is smooth. Using a spatula, spread the a thick layer of the chocolate mixture over the cooled crust. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours until the chocolate layer is firm. Peel off the parchment paper and cut into 1 1/2 by 2-inch bars. Serve at room temperature.

Note: To toast pecans, arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 350 degrees oven for 8 to 10 minutes until lightly browned.
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