Yesterday we did a bit of spur-of-the-moment back-to-school shopping, and the crowds at first shocked me, then it hit me – it is August. How did this happen? While some days may feel long, the weeks and months are indeed short, and all too soon I’ll have only two littles at home every day (at least until the baby joins us). In the chaos of taking 4 children everywhere all summer, it’s a little hard to imagine getting out with just two, only one of whom has an opinion on which ice cream flavour is best. I might be able to hear myself think again, for what little it’s worth.
The cooler summer has also made the days less sweaty-summer-slow, which certainly helps, and which keeps me much more in a baking mood. This is a good thing, since I just grated 26 cups of zucchini after my plant ran wiiillld in the one week (one week!) that we were away. Zucchini, you continue to make me believe I am the world’s best gardener. (Let’s not talk about my inexplicably flattened carrot tops).
So if you want to make zucchini things, by all means, I’ve got you covered, or really, just come over for muffins and cake and give my freezer a break, but sometimes you need a break from veggies in your treats and you need some chocolate chip square buried in chocolate chip square.
Few things hold the glowing nostalgia of childhood treats like classic chocolate chip squares. I don’t know if they were even one of my mom’s most commonly made recipes, but she definitely made some good ones. They just have that perfect balance of butter, vanilla, sugar, chocolate chips and under-baked chewiness that comfort food snacks are made of.
These squares are basically classic chocolate chip bars PLUS. Plus toffee bits. Plus sweetened condensed milk. Plus more cookie dough. Plus even more chocolate chips. (And ok, plus an extra step in prep).
These are not all that different from one of Carl’s all-time favourite treats, these Magic Chocolate Toffee Squares, but those have a shortbread crust, and almonds and coconut, so you still need to make both…stock up on toffee bits :)
- 2¼ cups all purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- ⅔ cuplightly packed brown sugar
- ¾ cup butter, softened or slightly melted
- 2 eggs, slightly beaten
- 1½ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips, divided
- 1 can sweetened condensed milk
- 1 cup toffee bits (such as Skor or Heath)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a 9x13-inch baking pan with aluminum foil and lightly spray with nonstick cooking spray.
- In a large bowl, by hand or with the paddle attachment on a mixer, mix together flour, salt and brown sugar. Cut in the butter until mixture is crumbly. Add eggs and mix well. Mix in 1 cup of the chocolate chips. The mixture will be quite stiff.
- Scoop out 1 cup of the dough and set aside. Press the remaining dough into the prepared pan. (It helps to wet your hands slightly and then push the dough into place with your hands). Bake for 10 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over the crust. Top with the toffee bits. Scatter pieces of the reserved dough over the top. Sprinkle with remaining ½ cup of chocolate chips. Bake for 25-28 more minutes until lightly golden. Cool completely, then lift out by the foil, transfer to cutting board, and cut into squares of desired size. Store in an airtight container at room temperature or in the fridge.
*Adapted from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe.