Torrone Molle-Italian Chocolate Bars

What a busy weekend before the Super Bowl! The Thursday before, I attended Chef Kevin Rathbun’s demonstration of Hass Avocado recipes which I posted earlier in the week here. It was great fun, plus the shopping and restaurants in Atlanta are superb. The weekend wore me out and I needed to write an entry in my blog, but I wanted something quick and easy.With my abundance of Ghirardelli bittersweet chocolate and several different kinds of nuts in my pantry to use, I finally found a great chocolate bar recipe called “Torrone Molle”, an Italian speciality. The word itself appealed to me. It only took 30 minutes to make, plus 8 hours chilling, so it was a great make-ahead, also. Torrone Molle is great with a strong cup of coffee or espresso.Torrone Molle6 oz/125g butter, softened6 oz/125g bittersweet chocolate, melted over double boiler on simmer1/2 cup shelled walnuts, coarsely ground3/8 cup blanched almonds, coarsely ground3/8 cup shelled hazelnuts, coarsely ground2/3 cup golden superfine sugar3 tablespoons water1 tablespoon brandy6 oz/125g plain cookies, I used Leibniz butter biscuitsBrush an 11×8 inch/28×20-cm jelly roll pan with oil. Place the softened butter in a bowl, add the melted chocolate and beat until smooth. Stir in the walnuts, almonds and hazelnuts. Place the sugar and water in a heavy-bottom saucepan and heat until the sugar has dissolved.Boil mixture steadily until a temperature of 241 degrees F/116 degrees C has been reached on a jelly thermometer, or to soft ball stage. Let cool for a few minutes, then beat vigorously. Pour into the chocolate mixture, stirring constantly, until smooth.Stir in the brandy. Break the cookies up into smaller almond size pieces and stir gently into the mixture. Turn into prepared pan and press to flatten. Cover and chill in the refrigerator for 8 hours, or overnight. Remove from refrigerator just before serving and cut into diamond shapes. Makes about 24 piecesAdapted from Best Ever Chocolate, Parragon Publishing

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