Saturday 14 March 2015

Walnut and Coconut Bourbon Salted Caramel Slice

We've come home recently from the most amazing camping trip in the Hawkes Bay. Gorgeous sunny weather, hours of tramping in breathtaking scenery, lots of clean green living.  Got home relaxed, refreshed, rejuvenated and feeling super fit and super motivated to be healthier.

I even started on the cardiology run as a trainee intern, which one would think would provide you with plenty of incentive to be good for a while.

{sunset at lake waikaremoana. no filter needed.}
But alas, a few weeks back and I've already slid into a trash food rebound. I'm talking curly fries, fried chicken, peanut butter pie and weekday merlots kinda rebound. The best kind.

So since I was following team cardio this weekend I thought I'd share the love - and the calories - with this gorgeous Walnut and Coconut Bourbon Salted Caramel SliceMight as well fall off the bandwagon in style I say.

This slice is most definitely not vegan. It's unashamedly gloriously decadent.

The bourbon salted caramel alone is made with sweetened condensed milk, golden syrup, bourbon and butter. The walnuts and coconut add a wonderful nuttiness.  It's just the right mix of salty sweet, nutty crunchy, and creamy caramel. To top it off, it's also criminally easy to make.

It's actually a slice I've been making for years now, inspired by something I loved at a cafe. I can't believe I've taken so long to think to post it!  Better late than never ay.

Walnut and Coconut Bourbon Salted Caramel Slice

Coconut Biscuit Base

1 1/2 cups plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup desiccated coconut
125g butter, melted

Nutty Bourbon Salted Caramel Topping

1 x 400g tin sweetened condensed milk
50g butter
1/4 cup golden syrup
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon bourbon
1 cup walnuts, chopped
1/2 cup thread coconut

1. Preheat your oven to 180oC with the oven rack in the middle/bottom half of the oven. Line a 21 cm square baking tin with tinfoil. Spray lightly with baking spray.

2. Base: In a bowl, whisk the flour, baking powder, brown sugar, desiccated coconut until well combined. Pour over the 125g melted butter and mix with a fork until it starts coming together in clumps.  Press the mixture into your prepared baking tray.  Bake at 180oC for 15 minutes until lightly golden. 

3. Topping: Meanwhile make the topping. In a small saucepan over medium-low heat melt the butter, sweetened condensed milk, golden syrup and vanilla, stirring constantly with a metal spoon. The mixture should thicken slightly and go a light golden colour. Take off the heat and stir in the bourbon and salt. Taste and adjust the salt and bourbon to your taste.  Gently stir in 1/2 cup of the chopped walnuts and 1/4 cup thread coconut.

4. Pour the caramel on top of the pre-baked base and spread evenly with a spatula. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup chopped walnuts and 1/4 cup thread coconut over the top evenly.  Press down ever so lightly on the coconut/walnuts to get them to stick to the caramel.  Return the whole slice into the oven at 180oC for a further 10-15 minutes to toast the coconut and walnuts and to set the caramel. Keep an eye on it as the coconut can go from golden to burnt quickly if your oven runs hot.

5. Allow to cool in the tin.  Remove from the tin when completely cool and slice into bars/squares with a sharp knife.

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