A Baked Mars Bar, for when you can’t get to Scotland for the original fried mars bar.
Back in 2002 my sister and the local church youth group visited Scotland. It took years of fundraising, with countless bottle drives and sales of chocolate covered almonds. At the time I was in training for rowing, so I my sister had a ready market of my crew and I to buy the chocolate. That said, she loved visiting Scotland. The stories she came back were…..well informative.
One aspect she, and others on the trip, kept obsessing over was the difference in the food. Such as the prevalence of ready made cakes in grocery stores. This might come as a shock to many Brits, but in North America if you are buying a cake in a grocery store, it was more than likely made in the grocery store. That, and they had some unique cakes on the store shelves of large grocery store. A Plumber’s Butt cake, and a Busty Boob cake. Don’t believe me? Seriously, google it.
However, what really shocked them was the fast food. If you’ve ever gone to Scotland, you will learn quickly that fried food is quite prevalent. I read somewhere that this was a historical reaction against the English, who favoured roasting. No idea if that is true or not. In any case, there is more deep frying in Scotland than in a state fair. Hamburger? Deep fry it. Sausage? Deep fry it. Pizza? Deep fry it. Mars bar? Deep fry it.
It is the last one, that when I first visited Scotland myself in 2008 that I was determined to try. I can’t lie, I was left slightly underwhelmed by the experience. I love Mars Bars, and what I got was a slightly mushy par cooked plate.
This summer, we visited Edinburgh again to see family and experience the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. I was told in advance Fringe was crazy, and people weren’t joking. It was random and totally insane. As we returned on the train, I started to reflect on my first visit and the ill-fated Mars bar. I also looked through some of my photos of my trip, so do check out the latest Big Notes entry for Edinburgh.
So, when I got back and was making my Cheeky Country Chicken Pie, I had a bit of pastry leftover. You can guess what happened next, I got creative and came up with the baked mars bar. I ran out to the shop and picked up a few mars bars. I wrapped one up in pastry and shoved it in the oven. It didn’t end well. However, I learned. I froze the next bar, and then wrapped it in pastry and gave it an egg wash. Put that into the hot oven, and viola. The baked Mars bar. Inspired by the deep-fried original, but made in your own oven.
Just a word of advice. Let the thing cool down before you eat it. Hot liquid chocolate and caramel is a mouth burning proposition.
Ok, milk is a good call. However, might I also suggest a good beer. If we are talking Scottish, than maybe BrewDog?
Hmm, something that is Scottish….. Oh come on, you know what it is going to be. I’m gonna be…..Listen on iTunes Listen on Spotify Listen on Amazon
The Baked Mars Bar!
- 250 g flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 250 g cold butter
- 150 ml cold water
- 6 Mars Bars individually frozen.
- 1 egg
- Start with the rough puff pastry. Mix the flour and salt into a large bowl. Chop the butter in small chunks, add them to the bowl and use a pastry cutter or rub them in loosely. Keep it slightly chunky.
- Add 100ml of the cold water to the bowl of flour. Mix and add water only until the dough comes together. Chill for 30 min.
- Turn out dough on a floured board. Knead gently, you don’t want the butter to start to melt, and shape the dough into a rectangle. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough in one direction only, roll the dough until 3 times the width, about 20 x 50cm. Do this quickly, again we want the butter to stay cold.
- Time for the turns! Fold the dough by taking the top and bottom third and fold over each other. Rotate (or turn!) the dough by a quarter and repeat step 3.
- When ready, turn the oven to 200C. It needs to be at this temperature before you start to prep the bars.
- Roll the pastry into rectangles, enough to wrap around the bar.
- Brush the inside of the pastry with beaten egg, and wrap up the pastry around the bars. Seal the pastry, and brush the outside with remaining egg wash. Place directly onto a parchment lined sheet, and shove immediately into the oven. Bake until crispy golden brown. Let cool, dust with icing sugar.