If you’re looking for an excuse to do some baking, why not try creating a traditional Canadian dessert? The Nanaimo Bar, which gets its name from the city of Nanaimo, located on Vancouver Island in British Columbia, consists of a crunchy biscuit base with a smooth custard layer and deliciously rich chocolate topping.

Sound intriguing? Here’s what you’ll need…

For the biscuit base

  • 125g softened butter
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 5 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 200g digestive biscuits, blitzed to crumbs
  • 100g desiccated coconut
  • 50g chopped almonds (optional)

For the custard icing

  • 100g butter, softened
  • 4 tbsp double cream
  • 3 tbsp custard powder
  • 250g icing sugar

For the chocolate topping

  • 150g dark chocolate
  • 50g butter

And here’s how to assemble…

First, melt the butter over a saucepan of simmering water, adding the sugar and cocoa powder and stirring now and again until silky smooth.

Next, whisk in the egg for 2-3 minutes until the mixture becomes thick. Take off the heat and stir in the digestive biscuit crumbs, as well as the desiccated coconut and chopped almonds (if you choose to include!) Press into the base of a lined 20 cm square tin and cool in the fridge for 10 mins.

Now it’s time for the custard part! Whisk together the butter, cream and custard powder together until light and fluffy, adding the icing sugar gradually until you’ve stirred it all in. Layer over the biscuit base and chill in the fridge for another 10 minutes. When you take it out the custard should no longer be soft (if it is, put back in the fridge for another few minutes!)

If you’ve resisted the urge not to snack on the chocolate, melt it with the butter in the microwave or over a pan of water and place back in the fridge. Now this is the part that requires a little bit of patience…

It will take about two hours for the chocolate to fully set (and you to enjoy this delicious treat!) Simply take out of the tin, cut into squares and serve!

Fancy trying a Nanaimo Bar in Canada? Browse our holidays.