Oaxaca fudge bars with cashew-crumb topping

  • Preparation Time25 mins
  • Cooking Time45 mins
  • Serves24
  • DifficultyEasy

For the crust and topping

105g plain flour
90g quick-cooking oatmeal
225g packed light brown sugar
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1/8 tsp salt
110g unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
50g coarsely chopped salted, roasted cashews

For the filling

70g plain flour
110g light brown sugar
1 tbsp instant espresso powder
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp chipotle chilli powder
1/4 tsp salt
340g premium milk chocolate, chopped
55g unsalted butter, chopped
3 large eggs
For the crust:
1) Adjust the oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 165C/Gas 3. Line a 20cm square metal baking tin with aluminium foil, leaving an overhang for easy removal. Spray the foil with nonstick cooking spray.

2) Whisk the flour, oatmeal, brown sugar, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt in a large bowl. Stir in the melted butter until combined. Set 125g of the oatmeal mixture aside. Press the remaining oatmeal mixture firmly into the prepared tin.

3) Bake until light golden brown, about 8 minutes. Cool completely. Stir the cashews into the reserved oatmeal mixture.

For the filling:
1) Whisk the flour, brown sugar, espresso powder, cinnamon, chilli powder and salt in a medium bowl. Put the chocolate and butter in large microwavable bowl; microwave on medium power until chocolate is softened, stopping every 30 seconds to stir.

2) Stir until the mixture is melted and smooth. Whisk in the eggs, then stir in the flour mixture. Pour the filling over the cooled crust and sprinkle with the reserved oatmeal mixture.

3) Bake until a cocktail stick inserted into centre comes out with few crumbs attached, 35 to 40 minutes. Cool to room temperature, at least 1 hour. Remove using foil overhang and cut into squares.

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