Monday, September 22, 2014

salted caramel bars

the goods:

2 cups (4 sticks) butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1 and 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla
4 cups flour

1 bag (14 ounces) caramels, unwrapped (about 40-50)
1/3 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 tablespoon coarse sea salt

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Line a 9-by-13 inch pan with parchment paper and spray lightly with cooking spray.
Make crust: In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine butter and sugars. Beat until creamy. Add in vanilla and beat until combined. Mix in flour until a soft dough forms. Press half the dough into the prepared pan. bake for 15 minutes. Refrigerate remaining dough.
Prepare caramel: Place caramels in a microwave safe bowl. Add the cream and vanilla, and microwave for 1 minute. Remove from microwave and stir. Continue to microwave in 20 second increments, stirring between each one until you reach a smooth consistency.
Pour the caramel filling over the baked crust. Sprinkle salt over the top. Remove the remaining dough from the fridge and crumble it evenly over the caramel. Bake until the caramel is bubbly and the top is golden brown, about 25-30 minutes. Let cool completely before cutting into squares.