One of the baking influences in my life was my grandmother, Alice Richards. Whenever we went to visit, she always had some freshly baked sweets. My two favorites being Nannie's Oatmeal Cookies and her incredible molasses squares. If they weren't baked when we arrived, she normally placed us at the kitchen table and we became her baking assistants.
Molasses squares are very different tasting. Most times I don't like to use the word molasses because the minute I do the response is, "I don't really like molasses." If I told you that white sugar and molasses make brown sugar, then technically I could call these brown sugar squares.
For years, I would bring them to parties and when asked what they were I'd get that funny "I don't like molasses" response and people wouldn't touch them. After a while I would tell people they would have to try them and guess what they were called. People would taste them and guess the chocolate and raisins and then the plate full of desserts would disappear.
These squares are very sweet and slightly chewy. The flavors of chocolate with butterscotch add to the chewy raisins, I think they are better than a 7 Layer Bar.
With Valentine's Day on Sunday, bake yourself a batch of these squares. If you choose to share them, don't tell people what is in them, make them guess...you'll end up with a true molasses square fan.
1 cup of white sugar
1/4 cup of molasses
2/3 cup of vegetable oil
A pinch of salt
1 teaspoon of vanilla
1 1/2 cups of flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 cups of chocolate chips
1 cup of butterscotch chips
1 cup of raisins
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease a 9 x 13 brownie pan.
Mix together the sugar, oil, molasses, eggs and vanilla until well blended and smooth. Add the dry ingredients (flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda). Mix until blended, the batter will be a dark brown and very smooth. Add chocolate chips, butterscotch chips and raisins.
Place mixture into baking pan and cook for 45 minutes. If the top browns too quickly, tent a piece of aluminum foil over the pan. The squares are done when a toothpick comes out clean. Allow the squares to cool before slicing. The large amount of chocolate and butterscotch make them very gooey until they cool.
Slice into squares. These squares can be frozen for up to three months. Enjoy.