The Scent of Caramel

How to Make: Caramel Slice

There’s something to be said for caramel slice; not just eating it, but making it too. Standing by the stove and giving in to the scents of my work as the shortbread is baking in the oven cheers me up on a miserable winter’s day. And while making caramel may seem like a difficult task, it really isn’t…

Caramel slice pile…

Believe me, I am the last person in the world who would take pleasure in following a recipe that is complex and mentally sweating (and swearing) over my labours. Therefore, when I say that making caramel is easy it must be true. And the real pleasure here is tasting your slice as you go – not excepting the sweetened condensed milk in the caramel. Yum!

Making caramel is not as complicated as it may appear, however it is important to watch it and keep the temperature consistent as it can burn. I give all the credit for this recipe to Jackie Brooks, the author of the book which I was lucky enough to find on one dreary day…

TIP: To make life easier, bake it in a throwaway BBQ foil tray. This saves on washing up and you can manipulate the bottom and sides to remove the caramel slice with ease!

Caramel Squares


Shortbread Base

  • 100 g butter
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 60 g cornflour, sifted
  • 3/4 cup plain flour, sifted

Caramel Filling

  • 125 g butter
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 400 g sweetened condensed milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Chocolate Topping

  • 200 g dark chocolate, melted

Makes 24

  1. Preheat oven to 180°C/350°F. To make base, place butter and sugar in a bowl and beat until light and fluffy. Mix in cornflour and flour, turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead briefly, then press into a buttered and lined 20 x 30cm (8 x 12in) shallow cake tin and bake for 25 minutes or until firm.
  2. To make filling, place butter, brown sugar and honey in a saucepan and cook over a medium heat, stirring constantly until sugar melts and ingredients are combined. Bring to the boil and simmer for 7 minutes. Beat in condensed milk and vanilla extract, pour filling over base and bake for 20 minutes longer. Set aside to cool completely. Spread melted chocolate over filling, set aside until firm, then cut into squares.

The caramel squares recipe in this post is from the book “High Tea: Delicious Collection of Classic Afternoon Treats” by Jackie Brooks, page 130, published in 2014 by New Holland Publishers.