Homestead Shortbread

This is my own variation of the traditional Scottish dessert “Millionaires shortbread”. With St. Patrick’s day coming I’m preparing traditional Irish and Scottish dishes. Around here St. Patrick’s day is really one of the largest celebrations of the year, although the family is primarily German in heritage the boys also get some Irish from me and a good amount of Scottish in my husbands family, I’m under the impression that when his family came to America it was changed from Mc Morrow to Morrow, and after all both boys are proud owners of somewhat Irish names! (Riley and Connor) So I’ve just fallen into habit of going a long with it. Its a really nice day to share family pride and it gives me an excuse to cook by theme! So here is my recipe for what I’m calling “Homestead Shortbread”. I thought this was a really rich and decadent treat.

Homestead Shortbread:
Shortbread crust:
2 tablespoons sugar
2/3 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup butter (cold and cut into small cubes)
2 teaspoons milk

Filling
1/2 cup chopped pecans (- 2 tablespoons for the top)
1 teaspoon brandy
1 can dulce de leche (toffee)

(If you can not find the dulce de leche what you would do is make a home made soft caramel or buy sweetened condensed milk and simmer it over medium low heat , stirring it about 20 minutes until its turned golden in color)

Topping:
1/2 cup chocolate chips
1/2 teaspoon corn syrup
1 tablespoon orange flavored liquor (optional, you can use cream or omit the liquid entirely)
2 tablespoons chopped pecans

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Set aside a greased 9 x 9 square pan. Wax paper or parchment on the bottom will make removal easier.

For the crust combine flour, sugar and salt in a bowl or food processor. Cut the butter into the flour mixture by crumbling it together with your hands or a fork until the butter is somewhat combined but the solid pieces are about the size of peas. (if your doing it in a food processor its about 10 pulses) Add the milk 1 teaspoon at a time. Place this mixture into the prepared pan and press down the crumbs until its fairly even textured and smooth. You can use the back of a measuring cup or glass to do this or just use your fingers. Place into the oven and bake 10-15 minutes until its golden around the edges.

In a bowl place the dulce de leche and microwave 10 seconds at a time until its just slightly warm (you just want to be able to spread it). Combine the pecans and brandy stir to combine. Place over top of the short bread and smooth it out. Place this in the refrigerator for about 20 minutes before adding the chocolate layer.

For the topping:
In a microwave safe bowl or over a double boiler melt your chocolate. In the microwave you would heat the chocolate about 10 seconds at a time stirring in between. Once your chocolate is mostly melted stir it and allow to rest a minute or two, this will allow your chocolate to melt the rest of the way without scorching it. Combine the corn syrup and orange liquor if desired. Pour evenly on top of the toffee layer and spread evenly over top of the bars. Sprinkle with chopped pecans and allow to chill again for about 20-30 minutes. Once they are set cut into squares and enjoy!

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