"This is a tender shortbread, topped with chewy caramel and salty-sweet peanuts," says Yu-Ching Lee. "Other nuts would also work with this, but peanuts remain a firm favourite. This is adapted from a recipe in Belinda Jeffery's brilliant book, Mix & Bake."
- 160 gm brown sugar
- 40 gm honey
- 45 gm unsalted butter
- ⅛ tsp chipotle powder (optional; see note)
- 200 gm salted roasted peanuts
- 125 gm unsalted butter, softened
- 60 gm caster sugar
- 1 egg yolk
- 25 gm (1 tbsp) shiro (white) miso paste
- 150 gm (1 cup) plain flour
- 20 gm cornflour
- ⅛ tsp baking powder
- 1Preheat oven to 185°C. Grease a 20cm square cake tin and line with baking paper, leaving a little overhanging.
- 2For shortbread base, beat butter and sugar in an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until pale and creamy (2-3 minutes). Add egg yolk and beat to combine. Fold in miso, then flour, cornflour, baking powder and ½ tsp sea salt flakes. Press into base of tin with a slightly wet offset palette knife or a spatula. Bake until golden brown (16-18 minutes).
- 3Meanwhile, combine sugar, honey, butter and chipotle in a small saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to a simmer, whisking continuously. Add peanuts and ½ tsp salt flakes and stir to coat. Spread peanut mixture over warm shortbread, return to oven and bake until golden brown (15-17 minutes). Cool until only slightly warm.
- 4Remove from tin, trim ends and cool completely. Cut in half, then into 3cm-wide bars and serve at room temperature or chilled for a chewier result. Store bars refrigerated in an airtight container for a week.
Powdered chipotle – smoked chilli – is available from Herbie's Spices (herbies.com.au).