This past week, while working with a client, we were looking at blogs and identifying certain websites that had blogs. She asked to view the website Real Simple because she liked the site and wanted to see if they had a blog. As we searched, we came upon their food blog. There was a recipe being highlighted called Raspberry-Walnut Crumble Bars. They looked really good and I hadn't listed a fruit cookie as part of The 12 Cookies of Christmas. (In my "baking" head, raspberry jam constitutes a fruit.)
I went back to the site yesterday and found the recipe to make these delicious looking bars. The ingredients are simple and I had the pan in the oven within 15 minutes. I love recipes like this because it allows me to be baking something while I am preparing other cookie recipes.
The house smelled incredible as the buttery mix and walnuts began to bake. They looked perfect coming out of the oven. My one comment will be that I changed the instructions around a bit. It calls for you to line the pan with parchment paper. I did not. I greased the pan and realized the mixture had plenty of butter and would do fine coming out of the pan. With a little bit of loosening around the pan, it came out in one piece which made it easy to cut into 24 bars.
The taste was "melt in your mouth" delicious. The dough is a bit like shortbread with a hint of cinnamon and nutmeg. I love the injection of raspberry which just adds to the flavor of the bar. I would actually use this as a substitute for a thumbprint cookie. Not as much filling but just as good.
If you want to make something quick and delicious, try these bars. And if you are adventurous, I'm sure strawberry, apricot or blackberry jam would taste equally as good!
1 3/4 cups of all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon of kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon of ground nutmeg
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) of unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup of sugar
2 large egg yolks
1 teaspoon of pure vanilla extract
2/3 cup of raspberry jam
1 cup of chopped walnuts
Heat oven to 350° F. Spray an 8-inch square baking pan with the cooking spray.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg.
Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar on medium-high speed until fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Beat in the egg yolks and vanilla. Reduce speed to low and gradually add the flour mixture, mixing until just combined (do not overmix).
Transfer two-thirds of the dough to the prepared pan and press in evenly; spread the jam on top.
Crumble the remaining dough over the jam and sprinkle with the walnuts.
Bake until golden, 35 to 45 minutes. Cool completely in the pan.
When cool, cut into 24 rectangles (6 rows by 4 rows). Store the bars in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 5 days.