It feels like it was a couple months ago that I was writing a post about choosing a college. Now I’m halfway done. I know it’s a cliche, but seriously, where has all the time gone?
I have this semester at school, next semester I’ll be studying abroad in London (woohoo!!), and after that, I’ll be a senior. It’s incredibly bizarre and I’m trying to convince myself I’m actually halfway done with my college years.
On the plus side: I’m finally living in a house, instead of the dorms or my sorority house, which means I finally have a kitchen. Oh my goodness, I’ve been waiting for this. I can finally bake when I want, without having to lug all my stuff from my room to the kitchen. Lazy girl problems, but it’s been a real issue.
Hopefully (for both my friends here and for you all!), this will mean it will be way easier for me to both bake, photograph, and post while at school. Finally!
One of the first things on the to-make here list are these bars. I need to make them for my friends here as soon as possible because simply put, they are easily in the top 3 most delicious things I’ve ever made, if not the best.
They are soft and squishy on the inside, the edges are delightfully chewy with the slightest bit of crunch. The chocolate is melty and amazing. The dough uses brown butter and brown sugar for a super buttery and caramelly taste, which is further amplified by the layer of dulce de leche (which makes everything better). The dulce de leche is sandwiched in with crumbles of the dough, and it’s all topped off with some crunchy sea salt flakes to counteract the sweetness.
All in all, these are pretty much heaven sliced into bar form. When I took my first bite, I was amazed and so excited about how delicious they were, but thought I was probably over reacting. My mom walked in a second later, I asked her to try them and tell if they were as good as I thought they were, and she declared them as the best thing I’ve ever made. Coming from her (compared to my dad, who says everything is the best thing I’ve ever made), that’s a biggie.
When my family tried them (after they had been in the freezer for a week), they all agreed that they were some of the best. These are some darn good cookie bars – make them, share them, and enjoy!
- 1 ¾ cup (7 1/4 oz.) unbleached all purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- 14 tablespoons (1 3/4 sticks) unsalted butter
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon table salt
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 large eggs, room temperature
- 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup toffee bits
- 1/2 cup dulce de leche
- 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9×13 in pan with nonstick cooking spray.
- In a heavy bottomed sauce pan, melt butter until browned. It takes about 5 minutes for butter to begin to smell nutty and start to brown, but watch carefully because it goes from perfectly browned to burned very fast. Once browned, remove from heat and allow to cool for 5 minutes.
- Add browned butter and sugars to the bowl of a mixer and mix until combined. Add eggs one at a time, mixing until completely combined, and then add the vanilla. Turn mixer off and add all of your dry ingredients to the bowl. Mix until just combined. Turn mixer off and fold in chocolate chips and toffee bits.
- Press half of the dough into the bottom of the pan. Spread 1/2 cup of dulce de leche over the dough. Sprinkle the rest of the dough over the top of the ducle de leche. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt.
- Bake for 15-17 minutes or until light golden brown. Let cool completely before cutting and serving.
Recipe adapted from The Seaside Baker