Michael Pollan is involved in some questionable stuff.
On the other hand, he is also the advocate of my most favorite food rule: if you make it yourself, it can’t be that bad for you. I’m going to assume that includes baked goods.
It’s New Year’s resolution time. I bet a lot of people have “eat better” on their list. Me too. But instead of sticking strictly to kale salads, I’m thinking more about my candy intake. I love candy. I’m not going to give it up entirely. But I am going to try not to eat it unless it’s homemade. Doable? We’ll see. It’s going to be fun to try.
Let’s start with these homemade Twix. Suprisingly simple. And considerably more delicious than the original. Less sweet. More butter. More crunch. More salt. Better chocolate. Can’t argue with that.
Homemade Twix Bars
Makes 48 cookies
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature (but not too soft), plus more for greasing the pan
1 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
12 ounces semisweet chocolate, melted
1. First make the cookie base. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Butter a 9-inch square baking pan and line with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhand on two sides. In a large bowl, beat the flour, confectioners’ sugar, brown sugar, and salt on medium speed until well-combined. Add the butter and beat until the crumbs are evenly moistened. Tip the crumbs into the prepared pan and pat down to make a neat even base. Bake the base until lightly golden and set, 15 to 18 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool.
2. Make the caramel. Add the sugar to a medium saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat, without stirring (although you can gently swirl the pan, if necessary), until the caramel is medium amber in color, 5 to 6 minutes. Clip a candy thermometer to the side of the pan and then slowly add the cream; be very careful, since it will bubble up and spatter. Stir in the butter. Cook until the mixture reaches 248°F. Immediately pour the caramel over the base. Lift and titlt the pan to spread the caramel evenly over the base. Let stand until cool and set, about 1 hour.
3. Using the parchment, lift the bar out of the pan and onto a cutting board. Using a serrated knife, cut the bar into 48 pieces. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. A few cookies at a time, dip them into the melted chocolate and toss them around with a fork to coat. Use the fork to lift each piece out and tap it against the side of the bowl to remove excess chocolate. Transfer the coated cookies to the prepared sheets. Pop the sheets in the fridge to harden.
Note: Simply coating the candy in melted chocolate works well, but you have to keep the finished cookies cold. And they will melt in your hands (and in your mouth). For instructions on how to temper chocolate, so that it is hard and stable at room temperature and in your hands, click here.