Prep: 20 minutes
Cook: 50 minutes
Chilling time: 2 hours
Total: 3 hours 10 minutes
Adapted from Williams Sonoma's Essentials of Baking
A few notes:
This makes a relatively small batch of (very rich) squares; feel free to double the recipe and bake the bars in a 9x9" pan.
The layer of ganache turned out thicker than I had planned. None of the chocophiles who ate these minded in the slightest, but you can cut the ganache in half if you like.
If you use a chocolate with lower cacao mass than the 70% called for, you may need to decrease the cream – or increase the chocolate – to end up with a firm-enough ganache.
These bars get soft and gooey at room temp; for best results, store in the fridge until an hour or so before serving.
The salt topping will dissolve after an hour or two, so sprinkle the salt just before serving. If I were making these to give as gifts, I would add 1/4 teaspoon of flakey salt to the caramel instead of sprinkling it on top.
I so love the macadamias here that I hesitate to suggest substitutions, but all nuts go well with salt, caramel and chocolate. (Peanuts, for instance, could make these taste like a sophisticated Snickers bar...).
The lemon juice in the caramel keeps the sugar from crystallizing; lacking a lemon, you can substitute a teaspoon or so of corn syrup.
Nutritional values are based on one of eighteen squares.