I decided to try something a little different for the T of my baking challenge – different in the sense that it was not a cake or cupcake. Not quite sure I wanted to tackle a pie just yet – pastry nerves, eek! – I decided to opt for a simple, yet tasty traybake. I dug out an old baking book I haven’t used for a while (Everyday Easy Cakes and Cupcakes) and got going.
When I announced to Steve on Sunday afternoon that I was just going to have a little bake, he was quick to remind me: “You said you were going to have a break from baking for two weeks!” This is true. Last weekend, I returned home knackered after a fab family weekend in Whitby and spent hours creating an Easter-themed cake for a staff-student charity bake off at work the following day. It was a good excuse to try out new techniques (more info on this in a forthcoming post), but it was bloody exhausting and to top it off, the prizes for the Bake Off ended up being raffled off the next day because there were not enough people taking part! Not that I’m competitive or anything, but it’s pretty soul destroying to toil over a creation for hours when afterwards, you feel as though you needn’t have made quite as much effort! At least it was all for a good cause, though.
Anyway, after what felt like a marathon baking session last week, I did indeed announce that I was fed up and taking a bit of a break, but after a week off I was itching to get going again. Plus, I was due to be meeting my friend Catherine ahead of her birthday, so I thought a sweet treat in addition to the gift I’d got her might be a good idea and give me a baking purpose. Catherine also kindly left me some surprise Easter-themed rocky road cakes at my house last week when I was out at work, which was a lovely surprise to return home to! I don’t often get baked for so I loved this and wanted to try and return the gesture in some way.
Super easy to make! As Catherine told me in her informal review, it was “Tasty with a visual punch”. Thanks for the props there, pal Did I just say ‘props’? Ugh.
Steve said it tasted a bit dry immediately after coming out of the fridge and that it is better when it has warmed up a little, but it’s not stopped either of us troughing away on the shortbread every time we go into the fridge.
- 250g unsalted butter
- 175g golden granulated sugar
- 225g plain flour
- 125g semolina
- 4-5 tablespoons ready made toffee sauce
- 150g dark chocolate
- 150g white chocolate
- Preheat the oven to 150C/300F/gas 2. Lightly grease a square cake tin and line with baking paper. Whisk the butter and sugar together until pale and creamy, then add the flour and semolina, and mix until well combined.
- Press the mixture into the tin and level the surface with a knife.
- Bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes, of until lightly golden, then remove and leave it to cool. Spoon the toffee sauce evenly over the shortbread, and smooth the surface with the back of a spoon until level.
- In two separate heatproof bowls, each set over a pan of simmering water, melt the dark and white chocolate. Spoon blobs of dark and white chocolate randomly over the toffee sauce layer, and create a marbled effect by blending them slightly with the back of a teaspoon.
- Chill for a couple of hours for the chocolate to set. Remove from the tin, place on a chopping board and cut into small squares with a large knife. I used a cleaver!