Here in Wellington, the city I live in (it’s in New Zealand) we are renowned as the “foodie capital” of New Zealand. There have been some news articles and the like that suggest that we actually have more cafes per capita than New York!
So, I guess, some would say that we enjoy good food. I love the fact that we have so many cafes, restaurants and other eateries, it provides ample opportunity to try all sorts of different cuisines as well as the opportunity to deplete my bank account… But the reason that I’m actually telling you all this, is that we have an annual event that runs for about two weeks in August, called Wellington on a Plate. During these two weeks there are heaps of different options of cooking classes, or tastings or other food-based events as well as restaurants offering special set menus featuring local Wellington ingredients. I can’t wait until it starts, there are about 10 different restaurants that I want to try, so we’ll see how many I actually get through!
Another big event under the Wellington on a Plate banner, is the Wellington Bake Club. Now as you can imagine, I am all for this! I entered in 2012 and won from my own bake club, but unfortunately didn’t get anywhere in the Wellington-wide competition. Last year I didn’t have the time to do it, but this year I’ve decided to enter again with three of my friends and we just completed week one! So the first challenge was baked slices and I won, yay! My entry was a recipe that I found on Alice in Bakingland, (although I didn’t salt the chocolate, that was a bit much for me!) another New Zealand baker, and the peanut butter just won my heart straight away. Happy baking!
Chocolate Caramel Peanut Butter Slice
1 cup flour
1/2 cup desiccated coconut
1/2 cup brown sugar
125 grams butter, melted
1/3 cup golden syrup
125 grams butter
2 x 400 gram tins sweetened condensed milk
1/2 to 3/4 cup crunchy peanut butter
200 grams bittersweet chocolate
2 Tbsp vegetable or canola oil
- Preheat oven to 180°C. Grease and line a 25cm x 25cm tin.
- Place flour, sugar, coconut and melted butter in a bowl and mix well. Press mix into lined tin and bake for 15-18 minutes or until light golden brown.
- To make the caramel filling place golden syrup, butter and condensed milk in a medium pot and stir over a low heat until butter is melted. Continue to stir for approximately 7 minutes until caramel has thickened slightly, then stir in 1/2 cup peanut butter until smooth. Taste caramel and add more peanut butter if desired.
- Pour hot caramel over base and bake for 10-12 minutes until caramel is getting brown on top and moving towards looking very brown, just don’t let it burn!
- Cool on bench then refrigerate until cold.
- Melt together chocolate and oil until smooth and pour over cold slice. Leave to set for a few minutes and then put it in the fridge until completely set and cold.
- Lastly, remove from tin and cut with a large sharp knife into squares.