For a 4th of July party this past weekend, I decided to forgo the traditional fruit-based desserts and go rich....really rich. I made Toffee Mascarpone Fudge Bars. They combine the crunchiness of toffee with smooth, rich chocolate. They were a big hit but are definitely best served indoors and away from the humidity! These indulgent little bars are so good, rich, and delicious that a little goes a long way...unless you're like me and keep going back for seconds...and thirds!
Regardless if you are going to a party or just want a dreamy, rich dessert to have around the house, this recipe is a real winner. It's deceptively simple, too, which is an added bonus with the busy summer months. Just be sure to truly let the chocolate set up in the refrigerator before you start in on these - it'll be worth the wait!
*Note: the recipe below is for a 7x10 3/4 pan. This recipe can easily be doubled for a 13x9 pan - this is what I did for the party and just got thicker, richer bars. Your choice!
Toffee Mascarpone Fudge Bars
Vegetable cooking spray
1 tube refrigerated sugar cookie dough, at room temperature
2 (1.4-ounces) chocolate-toffee candy bars, coarsely chopped, divided (*You can add more if you really love toffee!)
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1 C. semisweet chocolate chips
1 tsp. vegetable oil
1 C. (8 ounces) mascarpone cheese, at room temperature
1/4 C. salted almonds, chopped
Position an oven rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Spray a 7 by 10 3/4-inch nonstick baking pan with vegetable cooking spray. Lay a 6 by 18-inch piece of parchment paper in the pan, allowing the excess paper to overhang the sides. Spray the parchment paper lightly with cooking spray.
In a medium bowl, combine the cookie dough, 1/2 of the chopped chocolate-toffee candy pieces and vanilla extract. Using damp fingers, gently press the dough into the prepared pan. Using the tines of a fork, prick the dough all over. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes until the crust is lightly browned. Cool for 15 minutes.
Place the chocolate chips and vegetable oil in a medium bowl. Place the bowl over a pan of simmering water and stir until the chocolate has melted. Cool the chocolate mixture for 10 minutes. Whisk in the mascarpone cheese until the mixture is smooth. Using a spatula, spread the chocolate mixture over the cooled crust. Sprinkle the remaining chocolate-toffee candy pieces and chopped almonds over the chocolate mixture. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours until the chocolate layer is firm.
Peel off the parchment paper and cut into 1 inch by 1 inch bars. Serve at room temperature.