Nanaimo Bar Update

So remember when I posted about Nanaimo bars? I had a bunch of cool ideas to modify the basic recipe to exciting flavour combinations? I picked two variations to try as a Friday treat for my wife.

Unfortunately, they didn’t turn out too pretty.

I made “reverse” Nanaimo bars, with a non-chocolate crust, chocolate filling, and white chocolate topping. In normal Nanaimo bars, there is melted chocolate in the crust, which lets me get away with not including a raw egg (gross). However, when I removed this ingredient for the reverse bars, the crust didn’t hold together after refrigeration. This may also be because I softened but didn’t melt the butter, so the crust moisture wasn’t as homogenous as it could have been. Therefore it was crumbly.

The white chocolate I used to top the reverse bars turned out kind of grainy, but once it hardened in the fridge I didn’t notice the texture too much, given the crumbly texture of the bars themselves. I might not have measured out the correct masses of ingredients, which is what happens when you have a dial-style balance that displays in 20g increments. So I also didn’t make enough for the other type of bars I made.

I made Grasshoppers as the other flavour: ultra-chocolate and mint crust, mint green filling, and (though not planned) chocolate topping. They were actually delicious, but I’m not posting a recipe or a photo because a) I didn’t write down ingredients as I went, and b) I made my mini-batches in loaf pans, which results in broken Nanaimo bars as I try to remove them from the pan.

In conclusion, they were yummy, but presentation left something to be desired. The reverse Nanaimo bar recipe needs tweaking, too.

Here is my normal Nanaimo bar recipe:

Mom’s Nanaimo Bars – veganized!

Ingredients:

Base

–          2 Tbsp chocolate chips

–          1/2 cup margarine

–          2 Tbsp sugar

–          1 tsp vanilla

–          2 cups graham cracker crumbs (oreo brand are vegan)

–          1 cup shredded coconut

–          1/2 cup chopped walnuts or almonds (optional)

Custard filling

–          2 Tbsp Bird’s custard powder

–          1/4 cup margarine

–          2 cups icing sugar

–          3 Tbsp “milk”

Topping

–          1/4 cup chocolate chips

–          1 Tbsp margarine

Directions:

  1. Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave with half of the margarine until most of the chips are melted.
  2. Add the remaining margarine, sugar, and vanilla. Stir.
  3. Add the remaining ingredients for the base. Combine well.
  4. Press into a 7×11 (or 8×8 for thicker bars) pan and chill.
  5. Combine the custard powder and the margarine.
  6. Alternately add the icing sugar and milk and stir to get an icing-like filling.
  7. Distribute blobs of the filling all over the crust, then smooth out with a butter knife or offset spatula (if you start from only one location, you’re likely to tear up come of the crsut).
  8. Return to the fridge.
  9. Melt the chocolate and margarine together in a double boiler.
  10. Pour over the chilled filling and smooth out as in step 7.
  11. Chill for about 10 minutes, then score cutting lines in the chocolate.
  12. Chill until firm, and cut into squares.