Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Caramel Swirl Hunks

I've had my eye on this recipe for years.  I first picked up the book, A Passion For Baking by Marcy Goldman, about five years ago and earmarked this recipe.  I saved it too food.com, like I did with all of my recipes back then, and never made it.  A renewed desire to have a more diverse selection of items to bake led me back to this book.  There was the recipe again just screaming for me to make it so I set out to do just that.

I read the book cover to cover which included an entire section of ingredients and baking tips.  I have to disagree with Ms. Goldman on one point in particular that she makes in this chapter, as well as throughout her recipes.  She does not sift her dry ingredients together in her recipes and does not see the need for it.  This more than surprises me.  As an avid baker I have seen the quality of the results I yield increase over the years as my baking technique has evolved.  Sifting the dry ingredients together adds air and reduces lumps, which I feel is very important.  It's such a simple step that it seems silly to me not to do it.  I've included this step in my instructions below.

I started out by making my own dulce de leche out of a can of sweetened condensed milk but you may chose to purchase this item at the store in the Mexican aisle of your grocery store if you wish.  I have included my method at the end of the recipe if you would like to try it.

Caramel Swirl Hunks
2 cups unsalted butter, melted
3 cups light brown sugar, firmly packed
1/3 cup white sugar
4 large eggs
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 cup quick oats
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
14 oz dulce de leche

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Generously spray a 13x9 pan with nonstick cooking spray and place it on a parchment lined baking sheet.

In a mixer bowl, blend butter and both sugars. Add eggs, vanilla, and oats and blend well. Fold in flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Then fold in chocolate chips.

Spread batter in prepared pan. Top with dulce de leche and then swirl or smear dulche de leche into batter.

Bake 38 minutes or until batter is set (not wobbly and jiggly). If brownies seem browned around the edges and still jiggly in the center, reduce oven temperature to 325 degrees and continue baking atleast 15 minutes longer or until set.

Refrigerate or freeze 1 hour. Cut into large hunks or blocks.

Servings: 24
Cooking Times
Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 hour (or more)
Inactive Time: 1 hour
Oven Temperature: 350°F

Dulce de Leche
14 ounces sweetened condensed milk

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Empty contents of sweetened condensed milk into a pie plate and cover completely with aluminum foil.  Place pie plate into a roasting pan or other larger baking dish.  Add hot water into roasting pan until it comes up the sides of the pie plate but does not cover. 

Place roasting pan in oven for 1 hour.  Whisk until smooth. 

Cooking Times
Preparation Time: 5 minutes
Cooking Time: 1 hour
Oven Temperature: 425°F

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