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Montezuma’s Shortbread

by Joanne Harris & Fran Warde from The Little Book of Chocolat

Divine caramel drizzled on shortbread with a chocolate topping - heaven! Finish the millionaire's shortbread recipe with gold leaf to impress Montezuma himself.

From the book

Joanne Harris & Fran Warde


These rich caramel chocolate squares are traditionally known as ‘millionaire’s shortbread’. Add a little edible gold leaf on top and even Montezuma, the Chocolate King, would approve . . .

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250g plain flour
80g unrefined caster sugar
200g butter
Salted caramel:
100g butter
100g unrefined soft light brown sugar
2x 397g cans condensed milk
250g dark chocolate, broken into small, even-sized pieces
2 tbsp golden syrup
100g butter

Essential kit

You will need a food processor and a 33 x 25cm shallow tray.


Heat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4. Line a 33 x 25cm shallow tray with baking parchment.

In a food processor, blend the flour and caster sugar, then add the butter in small pieces,
whizzing until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Spread the mixture evenly on the lined tray, then compress it firmly with the palm of your hand or the back of a spoon. Place in the middle of the oven and bake for 25 minutes until just golden brown. Leave to cool in the tin.

To make the caramel, place the butter and sugar in a non-stick saucepan and heat very gently, stirring constantly until the sugar has dissolved. Add the condensed milk. Increase the heat, bring to a rapid boil, stirring continuously, and then reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes until the mixture has thickened. Quickly pour over the cooled shortbread in an even layer and chill until set.

For the topping, melt the chocolate, golden syrup and butter in a bain-marie and blend
together. Pour over the cold caramel and spread with a large palette knife. Leave to cool and set. Cut into 16 squares.

Aztec Emperor Montezuma reportedly drank over fifty portions of chocolate daily, calling it ‘the divine drink’.


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