I have yet to meet anyone who doesn’t like these – they’re chewy and crunchy, chocolatey and nutty, and just delicious. They also look beautiful, so perfect to make as a gift, or if you need to show off. You could use different nuts and swap in another dried fruit, but this is my favourite combination by far.
Orange, Almond & Cocoa Nib Florentines
- 55g caster sugar
- 55g unsalted butter, cold & cubed
- 80g whole almonds, roughly chopped
- 40g candied mixed peel
- 10g cocoa nibs
- 55g plain flour
- 180g dark chocolate, roughly chopped
- Heat the oven to 180’c fan. Line a baking tray with non-stick baking parchment.
- Put the sugar into a heavy pan with enough water just to wet it, then over a gentle heat cook it to a golden caramel (don’t stir it as this encourages it to crystallise, just swirl the pan to ensure even colouring)
- Once it’s golden, take it off the heat and whisk the butter in bit by bit, waiting for each addition to be incorporated before adding the next bit. (If it splits and starts to look oily, throw in an ice cube and whisk vigorously – it should come back together.)
- Toss the nuts, peel and nibs together with the flour in a mixing bowl, then pour the caramel over it and stir it in. Mix it until it’s uniform, it should just hold together, with some loose nuts and nibs.
- Divide the mixture into 12 or 14, then squeeze/pack them together into balls – flatten into discs and spread them out on the baking sheet. They will spread so leave plenty of room.
- Bake for 7-8 minutes, by which point they should be golden brown and smell amazing!
- Leave them to cool completely before you move them, as they are very fragile until they set (and actually, still fragile when cooled so handle with care)
- Temper the chocolate by putting 160g (reserve the rest) into a heatproof bowl and heating in the microwave for 30 seconds at a time, stirring between each blast. Once 3/4 of the chocolate in the bowl is melted, remove from microwave and stir until the rest is melted. Add pieces of the reserved chocolate, stirring and allowing the residual heat to melt it – keep adding until it will no longer melt. At that point, you’re ready to coat the back of the Florentines in the chocolate. Spread a thin layer over it using an offset palette knife, then drag fork tines through it, and leave it to set at room temperature.