I have this habit of afternoon coffee – every afternoon. My mom has this habit of morsels at tea time and dessert after dinner when we’re traveling. While one of us might be able to have self-control, when we’re together, we do it all, “sharing” along the way to feel a little less guilt. At each afternoon coffee and tea time, we selected the most delicious looking goodie. At one small coffee shop in Dufftown (pronounced Duff-tun), they had tiffin. We asked what it was and instead of explaining it to us, they offered us a chocolate tiffin sample and from that moment on we were hooked…
What is tiffin?
Tiffin is a chocolate morsel with cookie crumbs and dried fruit mixed in. It’s usually a combination of milk and dark chocolate. Traditionally, it’s made with tea biscuits or digestive crackers and raisins. Finding variations of this, however, is normal – the most fun version was a cranberry orange chocolate tiffin we enjoyed in Lerwick up on the Shetland Islands. During the course of our trip, I googled and emailed myself a number of recipes, but this was always going to be the first one I made if only because of how easy it is!
Chocolate Tiffin Ingredients
When I googled the tiffin recipe, one of the ingredients that stood out to me was golden syrup – corn syrup really. Trying to make the best decisions I can about what we eat, I googled alternatives. Apparently you can use maple syrup, but maple syrup has a distinct flavor and I wasn’t sure the consistency would be the same. So down the rabbit hole I went.
During my research I stumbled on two things. First was this article by David Lebovitz on when to use corn syrup. He basically says that while we should avoid corn syrup (mostly because it’s just another form of sugar), some recipes need it. Additionally, most recipes call for very little of the ingredient which is then divided by the servings. Second there are many kinds of corn syrup. Wholesome sweeteners makes a non-gmo, organic corn syrup, so that made me feel a ton better.
(side note – I found the sweetener at my local Sprouts market for $5.99 and then on sale from there. I have no idea why the Amazon price is so high!)
A No Bake Dessert
A few more tasty things. Most importantly, this is a super simple recipe that requires no baking, so it’s the perfect summer dessert! You can switch up the chocolate, the dried fruit, or even add chopped pecans (that’s what we’re going to do next). Also, since it’s chocolate, it can be served with your beverage of choice. I fell in love with it with my afternoon coffee, but when we got home, Scotch seemed the perfect pairing. I think it’d be delicious with a good red wine. But if there are kids around, a big glass of milk!
My recipe below is an American adaptation for a chocolate tiffin recipe with US measurements and ingredients that are readily available here in the States. Since things weren’t exactly the same, I was worried that it wouldn’t taste right. And when I took that first bite (13 seconds after pulling it out of the fridge), it was delicious but not exactly right. After it had come to room temperature, like how it’s served in Scotland, however, it tasted exactly as I remembered.
Tiffin is a Scottish morsel that needs to make it's way to the US. Chocolate stuffed with cookie crumbs and dried fruit, it's simple to make and always hits the spot (taking me back to the Scottish Highlands in a heartbeat)!
- 1/2 cup butter cubed if cold
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 2 tablespoons corn syrup
- 4 teaspoon cocoa powder
- 1 1/4 cups crushed ginger snap crumbs
- 2/3 cup dried fruit raisins - traditional, dried cranberries and candied orange here
- 2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
- In a saucepan, melt butter, sugar, corn syrup, and cocoa over low heat, mixing frequently. Add cookie crumbs and dried fruit - combine thoroughly. Spread mixture into 9x13 pan.
- In a microwave-safe bowl, heat chocolate chips in thirty second intervals, stirring between each interval. Continue until chocolate is completely melted.*
- Spread melted chocolate evenly over cookie mixture. Place in refrigerator for at least one hour.
- Remove from refrigerator. Let sit a few minutes before cutting into small squares.
- STORAGE: Can be stored in airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days. Can be stored in airtight container in the refrigerator for 1-2 weeks.
- *It took me a total of 2 minutes.