Ginger is one of my favourite flavours and when I hosted We Should Cocoa back in October I came very close to choosing it before settling on pumpkin instead, so I was more than a bit happy that birthday girl Jen at Blue Kitchen Bakes chose it for this month – the only difficulty was deciding what to bake!
I was toying with a few recipe ideas that used chunks of either stem or crystallised ginger, but the pony and I are attempting to have a bit of a money saving month (although he is doing a bit better than me!) so I ended up using what I already had on hand, in the form of ground ginger.
Inspired by these ginger crunch bars at Technicolour Kitchen, I set about making a sort of ginger version of millionaire’s shortbread, which is one of the pony’s favourites.
I used my own shortbread recipe, the icing from Technicolour Kitchen, and finished it with a layer of dark chocolate. If you are a ginger lover like me, then these bars beat millionaire’s shortbread hands down – the icing is so so good and the ginger really cuts through the sweetness.
I made quite a large batch of these, so I’m really hoping the pony devours them quickly or I can see myself heading back to the tub again, and again, and again…
Ginger chocolate shortbread bars
Makes 18 bars
For the base:
- 250g butter
- 330g plain flour
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 110g caster sugar
For the topping:
- 150g butter
- 80g golden syrup
- 1 1/2 tbsp ground ginger
- 225g icing sugar
- 200g dark chocolate
To make the base, stir the ginger into the flour and rub in the butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar then press into the base of a greased and lined 9×11″ shallow rectangular tin. Bake at 180 degrees for about 20 minutes, or until just starting to go golden, then leave to cool in the tin.
For the ginger layer, heat the butter, golden syrup and ginger in a saucepan over a medium heat, stirring until the butter has melted. Sift in the icing sugar then whisk until no lumps remain. Pour over the base and leave to set at room temperature.
Melt the chocolate over a low heat, don’t let it get too hot, then spread over the set ginger layer. Leave at room temperature until the chocolate has just hardened then cut into bars.