Line a 24cm x 24cm baking tin with baking paper, edges hanging up over the sides. This needn’t be precise – it’s just so you can pull the bars up easily later.
Make sure your peanuts are ready to roll – if they’re raw, peel roast them. Discard the skins, if they’re in skins. Chop them to your preferred size – I like a mix of finely and roughly chopped peanuts.
Place the rice malt syrup over in a small saucepan over a low heat. Allow it to cook for around 5 minutes. It should have started bubbling up around the 2 or 3 minute mark.
While this is happening, heat the cocoa or cacao butter in another small saucepan over a low heat. Once it has melted you can turn it off, or continue to leave it on a very low heat.
Now that the rice malt syrup has been going for around 5 minutes, add the soy milk and stir to combine. It should bubble and then subside, before beginning to bubble up again. Kind of similar to adding cream to a caramel sauce.
Next up, stir through the vanilla bean paste, and then the melted cocoa or cacao butter.
Follow this with the peanut butter and sea salt flakes, stirring them through until a smooth, peanut butter coloured mixture has formed. Take the mixture off the heat, and immediately stir through the peanuts. Pour the mixture into the prepared tin, and pop into the fridge to harden completely – at least 2 hours (overnight is ideal.)
The bars can be sliced pretty easily when cold, but as an insurance policy, I like to leave them at room temperature before cutting, and then put them in the freezer to flash freeze – around 10-15 minutes. The freezing makes the chocolate coating process a lot quicker, and allows you to do double coats very easily.