I’ve always liked the idea of a Twix bar. It has everything I like. Cookie base? Good! Chewy caramel middle? Excellent! Chocolatey coating? Sign me up! But when I partake in a Twix bar I’m always disappointed. On paper the bar is great, I even like the shareable aspect of it, but in practice the chocolate is okay, the caramel is underwhelming, and here’s the real deal-breaker, the cookie base. It’s dry, crumbly and devoid of flavor. But there is still a part of me that believes in the greatness of the Twix bar and that’s where this Eggnog Caramel Slice comes in.
The concept behind the Twix bar is not the problem, it’s more the execution. So, the simple solution is to make a Twix-equivalent at home. And if you happen to come to this decision during the holiday season, it’s practically your duty to introduce the likes of eggnog and nutmeg. And that’s exactly what I did.
Did making this Eggnog Caramel Slice take more effort than picking up a Twix bar at the corner store? You bet! Did it take longer than simply acquiring a Twix bar? Absolutely! Was it worth the extra time and effort? Without a doubt! Although if you had asked me any of those questions while I was making the Eggnog Caramel, there would’ve been a bit of hesitation.
There are many reasons why I don’t have a cooking show. My personal favorite is #348: the face I make when I’m making caramel. It’s not that I find making caramel hard, necessarily. It’s more that I find it incredibly stressful, and I find it incredibly stressful because I fear for the well-being of my Padernos and All-Clads. I baby my (expensive) cookware and, honestly, when I lose one it takes me a long time to work up the courage to invest in another. But having said that, no pot was harmed in the making of this Eggnog Caramel Slice. I just looked ridiculous for a portion of it. And really, should looking ridiculous deter you from making caramel? I think not.
I feel like I’m not really selling this recipe. So far I’ve described the Eggnog Caramel Slice as a time-consuming and stressful alternative to a ubiquitous chocolate bar. Let me remedy this gross injustice by telling you, this Eggnog Caramel Slice is out of this world. Seriously, slip a few slices to anyone this Christmas and you’ll never be omitted from their gift list. Not in a hundred years! When you combine a nutmeg-spiked shortbread crust with an eggnog caramel drenched in chocolate you have the power to win hearts and minds. Use it wisely.
Indulge your nearest and dearest in a Twix knock-off you can believe in. Make this Eggnog Caramel Slice today!
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons roasted coconut chips, finely chopped
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup dark rum
- 1/4 cup white corn syrup
- 1 cup eggnog
- 5 tablespoon cold unsalted butte, cubed
- 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise
- 3/4 teaspoon sea salt, divided
- 100 grams semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 2 teaspoons coconut oil
- Preheat oven to 350 F.
- Line an 8x8-inch brownie pan with parchment paper to form a sling.
- In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine flour, brown sugar, coconut chips, nutmeg and salt. Ensure no lumps of brown sugar remain.
- Pour butter over the dry ingredients and stir until the mixture starts to come together. It will look crumbly.
- Turn the crumbly dough into the brownie pan. Using your hands, press the dough evenly into the base of the brownie pan.
- Pop the dough into the oven and bake for 15 minutes or until golden.
- Allow to cool to room temperature.
- Combine sugar, corn syrup and rum in a small saucepan. Place over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Do not stir the mixture once it has come to a boil as this will promote crystallization, which will result in grainy caramel. Just swirl the mixture from time to time, to prevent sticking. Continue to boil the mixture until it turns the colour of cognac.
- While the sugar mixture is caramelizing, place the eggnog, butter, vanilla bean and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt in another small saucepan. Place the eggnog mixture over low heat. Heat mixture until the butter is melted and the eggnog is hot to the touch.
- When the sugar mixture is the right shade, remove it from the heat. Slowly add the eggnog mixture to the sugar mixture in 1/8 cup-sized increments. When the eggnog mixture hits the sugar mixture it will bubble violently. Stay calm and continue stirring as you slowly add the eggnog mixture.
- Once the eggnog mixture is integrated into the sugar mixture put it back on the heat.
- Bring the caramel to a boil and add a candy thermometer. Boil the caramel until the thermometer reads 245 F. This is known as the soft ball stage and it should take about 10 minutes of cooking to reach it. You can stir the caramel occasionally throughout this process with a wooden spoon.
- Once the caramel has reached the desired temperature, pour it over the cooled shortbread base. Sprinkle the caramel with the remaining salt and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
- Place the chocolate and the coconut oil in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave the chocolate in 30 second bursts, stirring in between, until smooth and glossy.
- Pour the chocolate mixture over the set caramel and tilt the pan to ensure full coverage.
- Place the finished Eggnog Caramel Slice in the fridge until the chocolate is set.
- When the chocolate is set, heat a large knife with hot water. Dry the knife and use it to cut the Eggnog Caramel Slice into bars.
- Give a box of them to someone you love.