Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Dorie's caramelized rice krispy topped bars

Shortbread-like bars are topped with a layer of chocolate and then with crunchy caramelized rice krispies! You might want to double the batch of rice krispies just to snack on!
This is one of those desserts where I say to myself, "Now why didn't I think of that?" I'm already a huge caramel fan, so when I saw this caramelized rice krispy topping from Dorie Greenspan, I was ready to smack my own head for not thinking of this idea on my own. Caramelized rice krispies is such a genius idea and needs to be its own snack and mixed in with everything.

Like yogurt. Ice cream. Brownies. And the list goes on.

But back to these bars.
The bars Dorie chose for these are shortbread-like. If that's not your thing, then feel free to try another base. I'm sure a solid sugar cookie in bar form would be perfectly suitable for the topping. My one complaint is that I should have doubled the rice krispy topping because I wanted to eat it as a snack. They also tended to fall off the bars, so that got a bit annoying.
But, Dorie has another winner here with these great bars. Again, feel free to use whatever bar base you want, but make sure you double that topping!

Dorie's caramelized rice krispy topped bars
Caramelized rice krispies
  • 3 and 1/2 ounces (99 grams) semi-sweet or bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
  • 1/4 cup (500 grams) granulated sugar
  • 1 and 1/2 Tablespoons water
  • 1 cup (27 grams) rice krispies
Bars
  • 1 stick (8 Tablespoons) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/4 cup (50 grams) light brown sugar, packed
  • 2 Tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3/4 cup (102 grams) all-purpose flour
Directions
Make the caramelized rice krispies: Line a standard baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat and set aside.

In a small saucepan, preferably one with a stainless bottom, combine the sugar and water. Put the saucepan on the stove and turn the stove to medium-high temperature. Do not touch the mixture, but feel free to swirl the pan around as needed. Once the mixture starts to change color to a light amber, remove the pan from the stove and stir in the rice krispies.

Work quickly and stir the rice krispies so each one is fully coated in the caramel. Place the pan back on top of the stove and continuously stir. The caramel may start to smoke a bit, and that's OK. Keep stirring until each rice krispy starts to turn a golden caramel color. Quickly scrape it onto your prepared baking sheet and spread everything out into one single layer. Allow it to cool and set aside.

To make the bars, preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Generously grease a standard 8"x8" square pan and set aside.

In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment or in a large bowl if using a handheld mixer, cream the butter, brown sugar, granulated sugar and salt together on medium speed until light and creamy, about 3 minutes. Add the vanilla.

Turn the mixer to low and add in all of the flour. Pulse the mixer about 5-6 times until the flour is fully incorporated. If it's not at this point, turn the mixer to low until it's well blended. The dough will be very sticky.

Transfer the dough to your prepared pan and spread it over the bottom of the pan. You may need to use your hands.

Bake in your preheated oven for about 22 minutes or until it starts to puff up. Turn the oven off.

Sprinkle the chopped chocolate on top of the hot bars and place it back in the (turned off) oven for about 2 minutes or until the chocolate is melted. Spread the chocolate evenly, using a spatula or the back of a spoon.

Break off the caramelized rice krispies and add it to the top of the melted chocolate, making sure to press down so it adheres to the chocolate.

Allow the bars to cool to room temperature and then cool in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes or until the chocolate is set.

Slice and serve once the bars have set. Bars should be kept in an airtight container at room temperature or in the refrigerator and will keep for at least a week.

Yield: About 16 bars

Source: Baking Chez Moi by Dorie Greenspan

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