Turtle Bars

Every Christmas I give my daughter Turtles Brand Caramel Nut Clusters, because she loves the combination of pecans, caramel and milk chocolate. I took all the wonderful flavors of pecans, caramel and milk chocolate, and put them in these delicious Turtle Bars.

I started by processing pecans into a fine crumb, and adding them to the crust. Then I made a soft and chewy caramel filling. Because loves the milk chocolate Turtle Candy, I topped these yummy Turtle Bars with milk chocolate, then more chopped pecans.

If you love Turtle Candy, you’ll love these Turtle Bars.

Let’s BAKE!

INGREDIENTS

CRUST
1/2 cup chopped pecans, toasted (56 grams)
1 cup flour (140 grams)
1/3 cup brown sugar (56 grams)
6 tablespoons cold butter, grated (84 grams)
1 tablespoon golden syrup

CARAMEL
3/4 cup heavy cream (180 ml)
1-1/3 cup caster sugar (270 grams)
6 Tbsp. butter, room temperature (90 grams)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

TOPPING
7 ounces milk chocolate chips (200 grams)
1/2 cup chopped pecans, toasted (56 grams)

DIRECTIONS

Preheat oven 350-degrees F. Make a parchment paper sling for 8 by 8-inch baking pan by folding 2 long sheets of parchment paper to be 8 inches wide. Spray bottom, corners, and sides of pan with cooking spray, lay one sheet of parchment paper in prepared pan, push paper up sides of pan with extra hanging over edges of pan. Spray parchment paper in the pan with cooking spray, lay 2nd sheet of parchment paper perpendicular to first sheet, push paper up sides of pan with extra hanging over edges of pan.

CRUST: Process 1/2 cup toasted pecans in food processor, until texture of coarse cornmeal, about 10 seconds. In a large bowl whisk together processed pecans, flour, and brown sugar. Grate 6 tablespoons cold butter into large bowl of pecans-flour mixture. Using your hands, rub the cold grated butter, until you get the texture of breadcrumbs; add golden syrup, continue to mix with hands until you get the texture of breadcrumbs. Press mixture evenly in prepared pan. Bake at 350-degrees F. for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown around the edges.

CARAMEL: In a small pot, warm heavy cream on medium heat until small bubbles form around the edges; remove from heat, set aside. In a large sauce pan, fitted with a candy thermometer, heat caster sugar on medium heat. Once the sugar starts to liquify, stir frequently with a wooden spoon, dragging the sugar towards the center to prevent any burnt spots, this can take around 10 minutes. Once the sugar is totally dissolved and amber color, remove from heat, slowly add warm heavy cream, stirring constantly until bubbles have subsided (this mixture will create a lot of steam and bubbles). Add butter, salt, and vanilla, stirring until smooth. Return to medium heat, bringing mixture to 240-degrees F (118-degrees C), this can take about 10 minutes. Pour caramel over crust. Let cool completely.

TOPPING: In a medium bowl, melt chocolate chips in microwave, stirring every 15 seconds (do not overheat). If you have a few chocolate chips not melted, stir a few seconds to see if they melt (if not smooth, microwave 5-10 seconds at half power). Pour on caramel, smooth with offset spatula. Sprinkle 1/2 cup toasted chopped pecans on top of chocolate; pressing slightly so they don’t fall off. Let sit for 10 minutes, then refrigerate the turtle bars until the chocolate hardens, about 15-30 minutes. Cut into 16 squares.

Serve and enjoy.

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