Nutella is a staple in my pantry. Believe me, I have no illusions it is or ever should be considered a health food, unlike this California woman who, apparently, couldn’t read a nutrition label. But I keep a jar handy. Just in case.
That is….just in case I get the urge to make something sort of sinfully delicious and then give it away to people I know. You know, lead me not in to temptation, and all. (Sorry, friends, you’re in charge of your own temptations).
Kat was not a fan of these. She actually said there wasn’t enough Nutella. In a certain way, she’s right. The caramel is clearly the star in these squares of chewy, crumbly deliciousness. There’s just more of it. If you feel the urge to add more Nutella, have at it, but I thought it was just the right amount. The original recipe calls for 1/4 cup, but I followed the recipe as adapted and used closer to 1/2 cup – just eyeballing it.
The pastry is truly more of a shortbread – crisp and buttery, and I thought that was delicious, too, since there’s plenty of chewy goodness in the filling. Although Kat’s review wasn’t glowing, I gave some away to her first grade teacher and the Caramel Nutella Crumble Bars drew raves.
If you can’t resist the temptation, February 5, 2012, is apparently World Nutella Day, so be prepared. If you click on the link, you’ll find another link to over 700 more Nutella recipes. Lead me not in to temptation, yes. But it doesn’t say anywhere I shouldn’t lead you into temptation. Enjoy!!
Caramel Nutella Crumb Bars
recipe courtesy: Buns in My Oven
For the crust & topping:
- 2 sticks unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon vanilla
- 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
For the caramel & Nutella filling:
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 tablespoon light corn syrup
- 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1 14 ounce can sweetened condensed milk
- 1/4 – 1/2 cup Nutella, depending on how thick you want your Nutella layer
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and line 13×9 baking dish with parchment paper.
For the dough, beat together butter, sugar, and salt (on medium speed w/paddle attachment if using a stand mixer) until creamy. Add vanilla and beat until combined.
Slowly add 2 1/4 cups of the flour, beating (on low) just until the dough becomes smooth and the flour is incorporated.
Evenly press 3/4s of the dough in the prepared baking dish to form the bottom layer. Refrigerate while you prepare the crumb topping and filling.
Add the remaining 1/4 cup of flour to the remaining dough and work together (I just used my pastry blender for this) until coarse and crumbly. Do not over mix.
For the caramel filling, place the butter, corn syrup, brown sugar, and condensed milk in a saucepan over medium low heat. Bring to a simmer, whisking occasionally. When the mixture begins to boil, whisk frequently until it darkens and begins to thicken, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
Remove the crust from the refrigerator and spread with Nutella. You may need to warm the Nutella in the microwave for a bit to soften it up enough to spread easily.
Pour the caramel filling over the Nutella layer and spread evenly with a spatula. Sprinkle on the crumb topping and bake for about 30 minutes or until the filling is a dark brown color and hot and bubbling.
Cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes and then cut into 24 2″ squares.