Nutty Caramel Cheesecake Bars

Peanut Butter Caramel Cheesecake Traybake
I desperately wanted to make something with peanut butter this week, as well as using up some cream cheese. So here is my extremely tasty recipe for peanut butter cheesecake traybake, with a chocolate biscuit base and salted caramel topping. The biscuit base and the salted caramel can be made in advance too. If you have any plain or lightly salted peanuts lying around, chop them up and sprinkle them over the top for extra crunch.
Makes 15-18 squares


For the Biscuit Base:
250g unsalted butter
420g caster sugar
2 eggs
½ vanilla ecsence
380g plain flour
60g cocoa powder
1tsp bicarbonate soda
pinch of salt

For the Salted Caramel:
200g caster sugar
50g golden syrup
50ml water
180ml double cream
1tsp fine sea salt

For the Cheesecake Filling:
80g crunchy peanut butter
300g cream cheese
60g icing sugar
1 egg

Start by making your biscuit dough. In a large bowl cream together the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy. Add the eggs and vanilla and stir until well mixed. Sift in the flour, cocoa powder, bicarbonate of soda and salt, then gently mix or knead together until it forms a soft dough. Cut off a quarter of the dough, wrap in cling film and put in the fridge for later. Line a 20x30cm baking tin with baking parchment, and press the remaining dough into the base. Refrigerate for 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, make your salted caramel and preheat the oven to 170°C.  Put the caster sugar, syrup and water into a small saucepan and boil for about 10minutes until it is a rich clear caramel colour. Use a sugar thermometer if you have one. Whilst this is boiling, get another small saucepan and pour in the double cream and salt. Gently bring to the boil until all of the salt has dissolved. Pour the cream mixture into the hot caramel, it will bubble up. Swirl gently then set aside to cool.

Remove the biscuit base from the fridge and bake in a pre-heated for 20-25 minutes. Whilst the biscuit base is cooling, it's time to make the topping. In a bowl, mix together the peanut butter, cream cheese, icing sugar and the egg.

Now for the assembly. Once the base has completely cooled, spread the cheesecake filling in an even layer onto the biscuit base. Drizzle the caramel over the top and swirl it through with a skewer to create a marbled effect. Crumble pieces of the chilled dough all over the cheesecake.

Bake in the oven for 30-40 minutes, until the cheesecake is firm around the edges with just a bit of wobble in the middle. Leave to cool, then place in the fridge to set before slicing into squares and serving.

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