Review: Ginger and Pickles’ millionaire shortbread
Homemade cake from an affluent Cheshire town. It’s what retirement feels like.
Millionaire shortbread is without a doubt a key competitor to be crowned the most overrated cake in the world.
The fact that it contains caramel is an immediate issue. Sadly, the reputation of caramel has been destroyed by corporate chocolate companies that have stretched the meaning of caramel beyond its limits. Take Cadbury's Curly Wurly as an example. It's a thinly spread, chewy mess of a chocolate bar that should be hailed with ballads of disgust every time it is seen.
Then there's the name, which is probably its greatest problem. A millionaire shortbread suggests grandeur and quality akin to London's Saville Row, but, as woefully tiny and disgustingly sugary offerings provided by the likes of McVitie's confirm, the name rarely lives up to reality. I was therefore shocked to the point of hysteria to discover that a wonderful millionaire shortbread does actually exist.
Sliced from the delicacies at Ginger and Pickles' store in Nantwich, Cheshire, the millionaire shortbread was of a size equivalent to the Moon.
The chocolatey snack lived up perfectly to its rich title. There was a beautifully thick milk-and-white chocolate casing on top, with a biscuit mountain of a base sandwiching an overflowing river of caramel literally dripping from the edges. It was like looking at a fantasy – and that was before the taste.
High quality ingredients and skilled baking clearly work. Ordinarily, a thin swirl of white chocolate amid of mass of sugary chocolate and caramel would be completely ineffective, but the genuine homemade qualities of Ginger and Pickles' shortbread meant that it had a distinctive, flavourful impact.
This theme continued throughout the entire treat. I don’t believe in perfection, but this is probably the closest thing to it – other than a heated swimming pool surrounded by flamingos, obviously. The caramel was thick and gooey, sweet without being overpowering, and teamed expertly with the slab of chocolate that cracked satisfyingly with each giant bite.
A base that crunched and crumbled while being softly composed provided a genius combination of paradoxes that even the most dedicated Star Wars fan could never fathom.
It was stunning to discover such a superb display of chocolate crafting, earning Ginger and Pickles a thoroughly well-deserved honour of being an expert in the making of gorgeous treats. It's sandwiches are worthy of a gong or 10, too.