Another inspiration from The Barefoot Contessa...  Peanut Butter & Jelly Bars.  I highly recommend you only make these if you have someone or multiple people to share them with.  They are good.  Crave-able good.  In fact, just writing about them right now is making me crazy for them.  It is settled.  I'll be making another batch of them today.  I think I'll have one, save one for Mike, then take the rest over to the neighbor's so I don't finish them off before the end of the day.

When I first made them a couple of weeks ago...
Jenny : Should I add oats to these to make them kind of healthy?
Mike : Nahhh.
Jenny : Ya, you're right.  Nahhh.  But, then they would be sort of like breakfast bars.  I could eat them for breakfast.
Mike : They're cookies, you won't want them for breakfast.
Jenny : Ya, you're right.

Guess what?  I did want them for breakfast.  Lunch and dinner....

They are everything you'd hope them to be.  Dense, peanut buttery, and crumbly with a layer of sweet raspberry jam that has thicken in the oven.  For a peanut butter fanatic, they are divine.  Let me know if you try them with oats - I'd love to hear how it goes.  I did nothing differently from the original recipe except I used chunky PB and added extra nuts to the top.  I like the crunchy texture they add.  Oh, and this is just half of the original recipe.  There is no need to tempt yourself by an entire large pan of these.  No need.

Peanut Butter & Jelly Bars

1 stick of butter, at room temperature
3/4 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 extra-large egg
1 cup of crunchy peanut butter
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup of raspberry jam or other jam
1/2 cup salted peanuts, coarsely chopped

In a mixer, cream together butter and sugar for 2 minutes.  Add vanilla, egg and peanut butter.  Mix until well incorporated.  Add flour, baking powder and salt.  Mix together on low, just until incorporated.

Grease a 9x9 pan.  Put 2/3 of the mixture in and press it into the bottom.  Spread the jam over the dough layer.  Add the chopped peanuts to the remaining 1/3 of the dough mixture.  Mix it together (with your hands) until the peanuts are mixed in.  Crumble the mixture over the jam layer.

Bake at 350 for 30 minutes.  Let it cool for 20 minutes before cutting to let the jam set.

It is basically a peanut butter cookie dough.  Press 2/3s of it in the bottom of the pan.

Spread the jam.  When it cooks, it bubbles up and thickens into a chewy gel.  So good!




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