English Toffee Bars

While these aren’t traditional Norwegian cookies, they were always a staple on my mom’s cookie platters. They’re easy to make and delicious – one year my dad ate so many of them he made himself sick, and swore he would never eat another one as long as he lived. (He reneged on that promise only a few years later). Not only are they one of my dad’s favorites, they’ve become a favorite of Jay’s kids too.

Since they call for egg yolks, it’s good to make them the same day as Hungarian Butterhorns, which call for egg whites.

Makes 10-12 dozen bite-sized cookies (1″ x 2″)

2 c butter
1 c sugar
1 c brown sugar
2 t vanilla
4 egg yolks
2 c flour
2 c old-fashioned oats (instant oats work, but they’re not as yummy)
15 oz or more of Hershey’s milk chocolate bars
2-3 T butter
chopped walnuts (almonds or even pecans work too)

Cream the butter and sugars. Add the vanilla and egg yolks one at a time, then scrape down the bowl. Add flour, then oatmeal.

Read Christmas Cookie Basics for more about how to prepare dough.

Spread the sticky dough in a thin layer in a walled 9×13″ cookie pan. A nice thin 1/4″ layer will make for a sophisticated, slightly crunchy cookie. If you make them the thickness of ordinary cookie bars (like this photo), you’ll end up with … an ordinary cookie bar. LOL

The other problem with these cookies is that there’s the wrong cookie to chocolate ratio. It’s like they used the chocolate to frost the cookies, and that’s not what you want.

Rather, you want a layer of chocolate that’s almost as thick as the cookie part, like these ones at right.

Bake your pan of cookies at 325° for 25 minutes, until the edges just begin to brown.

While the cookie is baking, melt chocolate with butter in a double boiler or the microwave.

Spread chocolate mixture on finished cookie, then top with chopped nuts. Allow the cookie to cool enough that the chocolate is no longer liquid, but not enough that it’s become hard, before you slice the cookie into bite-sized squares. If you wait too long, the chocolate will pop off the cookie base when you cut into it!

Store in a container by themselves – if not, the chocolate aroma will permeate any other cookies in the tin!

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