Friday, January 10, 2014

Chocolate Caramel Swirl Shortbread Bites

Chocolate Caramel Swirl Shortbread Bites

This was my invention for the Cookie Exchange Party I went to this year.  They were a huge hit among my friends and neighbors.  They are perfect for a cookie exchange because one recipe will yield many, many shortbread bites!  These would be great for an open house or any party where you need a lot of little yummy things eat!
1 pound butter
1 cup sugar
4 cups flour
1 teaspoon almond flavoring

Cream butter and sugar in an electric mixer until fluffy.  Add 1/2 cup flour and a time and mix until dough is formed . Add almond flavoring.  Line 13X18 inch rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper and press dough into bottom on baking sheet and prick top of dough with a fork.  Bake at 270 for 30-40 minutes or until very lightly browned.  Do not over bake.  While shortbread is baking make caramel.

:¾ cup granulated sugar
¾ cup brown sugar
½ cup corn syrup
½ cup water
1 teaspoon white vinegar
¼ teaspoon salt
¾ cup butter
11.5 ounce bag milk chocolate chips (2 cups)

Combine sugars, corn syrup, water, vinegar and salt in a small heavy pot.  Heat mixture to a boil on medium heat, stirring occasionally until boiling.  Cook to almost 235 degrees on a candy thermometer.  Turn heat off under caramel.  Have ready to pour over shortbread when it comes out of the oven. Pour over shortbread and spread evenly.  Sprinkle 2 cups milk chocolate chips over the top of hot caramel.  Let stand a few minutes to melt the chocolate.  With the back of a metal spoon swirl melted chocolate throughout the melted caramel.  Don't completely cover the caramel with the melted chocolate.  Sprinkle with coarse sea salt if desired.  Cool completely.  Cut into small squares.

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