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Nutty Florentine bars

This clever tray bake combines a buttery shortbread base with a Florentine inspired topping - finished with cherries and dark chocolate

  • Prep: 15 mins
    Cook: 50 mins
    plus chilling
  • Cuts into 18-21 bars
  • Easy
  • Cuts into 18-21 bars
  • Easy
  • Calories 257
  • Carbohydrates 24
  • Saturated Fat 8
  • Sugar 12
  • Protein 3
  • Fat 16
  • Fibre 1
  • Salt 0.2

Nutrition per serving

  • Calories 257
  • Carbohydrates 24
  • Saturated Fat 8
  • Sugar 12
  • Protein 3
  • Fat 16
  • Fibre 1
  • Salt 0.2

Ingredients

  • 225g salted butter, at room temperature
  • 175g golden caster sugar
  • ¼ tsp almond extract
  • 200g plain flour, plus 1 tbsp extra
  • 100g ground rice
  • 75ml double cream
  • 50g toasted flaked almonds
  • 25g whole blanched almonds
  • 25g walnuts, roughly chopped
  • 25g pecans
  • 25g blanched hazelnuts, halved
  • 50g glacé cherries, sliced
  • 25g dried cherries
  • 50g dark chocolate, melted

Method

  1. Start with the base. Line a 20cm square tin with some baking parchment. Put 200g of the butter and 100g of the sugar in a food processor and whizz until smooth. Add the almond extract, flour and ground rice, and pulse until the mixture comes together. Press the mixture into the base of your tin, flattening the surface as much as possible. Chill for at least 30 mins, or for up to 2 days.

  2. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Peel off the cling film, prick the base a few times with the prongs of a fork. Bake for 25 mins.

  3. Meanwhile, put the remaining 25g butter, 75g sugar and 1 tbsp flour in a small pan. Heat gently, stirring, until the butter and sugar have melted. Stir in the cream until smooth, then the nuts, glacé and dried cherries.

  4. When the base has baked, dot the hot nut mixture all over the top and gently spread with the back of a spoon. Return to oven and bake for another 10-20 mins until the top is golden – check every 5 mins. Cool to room temperature, then melt the dark chocolate in a microwave or in a bowl over, but not touching, a pan of hot water. Drizzle the chocolate all over the top, and leave to set solid before removing and cutting into thin bars.

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