Showing posts with label bar cookies. Show all posts
Showing posts with label bar cookies. Show all posts


Billion Dollar Bars aka Homemade Candy Bars

Do you Pinterest?
Apparently everyone is Pinning these days.
Last week, Bonnie Oscarson was named the new General Young Women President of the LDS (Mormon) church. The lead line of a news story I read about Sister Oscarson stated that she is on Pinterest. Of course,  people weighed in on her activity online. Some of the comments stated were negative. Others positive. My thought?
Wow, she's one of us :)
Here's a recipe I found recently and Pinned. If you are a peanutbutterandchocolate kind of gal, you have to make this.
R I G H T  N O W .

Billion Dollar Bars

Bottom Chocolate Layer:
1 cup milk chocolate chips (or half semi-sweet)
1/3 cup butterscotch chips
1/3 cup peanut butter
Melt milk chocolate chips, butterscotch chips and peanut butter in a pan over low heat; stirring constantly. Pour mixture into a 9 x 13″ baking pan lightly coated with nonstick spray or lined with plastic wrap which is long enough to drape over sides of the pan. Spread mixture and place in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Nougat Layer
4 tablespoons butter
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup evaporated milk
1-1/2 cups marshmallow creme
1/3 cup peanut butter
1-1/2 cups chopped salted peanuts (optional)
Melt butter over medium heat in pan; add sugars and evaporated milk; bring to a boil, and cook additional 5 minutes while stirring. Remove from the heat and add marshmallow creme and peanut butter. Pour over the bottom layer and gently spread mixture. If you use peanuts, scatter across the top. Place in the refrigerator for 15 - 30 minutes.

Caramel Layer
1 (14-ounce package) caramel candy
1/4 cup cream
1 tablespoon butter
Place the unwrapped caramel candy, butter, and cream in a medium saucepan. Place over low heat and stir until the mixture has completely melted and is smooth. Pour in the pan and quickly spread over nougat layer. Place in the refrigerator for 15 - 30 minutes.

Top Chocolate Layer
1 cup milk chocolate chips (or half semi-sweet)
1/3 cup butterscotch chips
1/3 cup creamy peanut butter
chopped almonds
Melt milk chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, and peanut butter in a pan over low heat, stirring consistently. Pour over the caramel layer and spread. 
Sprinkle chopped nuts over top of chocolate while still soft. 
Place in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour before cutting into squares. These are very rich, cut into small squares. If eating right away, place on platter and serve. If the bars start to get too soft, place in refrigerator to firm up a bit. 
Store in an air-tight container in refrigerator.


ABK's Butterscotch Hello Dolly! Bars

These bars have been around forever. We  baked a variation of these and served them at our wedding reception back in 1982. I know, 1982? Yes, we had ovens back then. 
I believe these were one of Grant's Grandmother's favorites, so we added it to our dessert menu for the reception. We had all kinds of other yummy treats including hundreds of little finger sandwiches that Grandmother Lauder and Great Aunt Mille made the day before the wedding. What a wonderful memory and legacy they left their families of love and service! I still remember those little rolled and layered sandwiches, and the buffet of miniature desserts: Chiffon Nut Bars, Peanut Butter Balls, Shortbread cookies and Hello Dolly Bars.

Most people know this dessert by the name "7 Layer Bars" or Hello Dolly Bars.   I tweaked this recipe over the years to include a thicker layer of the filling, and baked it less to make the treats a little less dry, and a little more chewy.
Every Christmas cookie tray needs a bar cookie.
This is it. Crushed cookies and butter. Two types of chocolate. A little butterscotch. A layer of caramel. Coconut and pecans.  What more could you ask for in a treat?
I've died and gone to heaven.
Not really. Ill be back tomorrow with another Christmas cookie recipe. 

ABK's Butterscotch Hello Dolly!  Bars
A Bountiful Kitchen
print recipe

Cooking Spray
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs and 1/2 cup Veritable Petit Beurre crackers*,
or crushed shortbread cookies (2 cups total crumbs)
1/2 cup butter, melted
1 tablespoon sugar
2 cups milk chocolate chips
1 (14 oz.) can Sweetened Condensed Milk
2 cup (11 oz.) butterscotch-flavored chips
1 cup (6 oz. pkg.) semi-sweet chocolate chips
1 small package (7-9 oz)  or about 1 1/2 cups, loosely packed coconut, sweetened or unsweetened
1 1/2 cup chopped nuts (pecans are preferred)

Heat oven 350°F. Spray 13 x 9-inch baking pan lightly with non stick cooking spray.
Pulse crackers in a food processor or finely crush in a bag. Combine graham cracker crumbs, melted butter and 1 tablespoon sugar; mix well. Press crumb mixture firmly into bottom of prepared pan. 
Top with 2 cups milk chocolate chips.
Pour sweetened condensed milk evenly over crumb mixture and milk chocolate chips.
Layer evenly with remaining ingredients; press down firmly with fork.
Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until lightly browned. Loosen from sides of pan while still warm; cool on wire rack. Cut into bars or diamonds. Yield: 2 dozen bars.

-*Veritable Petit Buerre crackers are a plain slightly sweet biscuit-type cracker sold in Europe. I had some in my pantry and used them in this recipe. Don't feel like you need to use up your stash of imported crackers or cookies to make this recipe. Any type of dry, sweet cracker or cookie will work. Or you may use all graham crackers instead of combining two types of cookie.
-If you want to make a really thick bar, use a 9x9 pan and bake for an additional 8 minutes on the lower third of the oven.


Peanut Butter Scotchies and Happy Bday Stephen!

How to make Mother sad:

Mother sends package to Mexico to son on mission, in November, with Christmas gifts inside. December 25th. No package received.
Mother sends package to son mid-December with home made treats, hoping it will get there close to Christmas/New Year. No package received.
Mother sends package end of December for missionary son's January birthday.
Seven weeks after first package sent. Still, no packages received. Sob. Sob. Sniff, Sniff.

How to make Mother happy:

Mother talks to son on SKYPE (greatest invention, EVER) on Christmas day. Son doesn't care he didn't receive package, he is just beaming and so thrilled to be able to talk and see his family online!
Mother sends email just before son's birthday.
The email starts off with- Questions: PACKAGES????
Son's response in email later that day: "No packages, yet. Don't worry about it. I love you! I miss you a lot." 
Also in Mother's email to son: Do you need anything?
Missionary son: "I just want some homemade cookies or something haha." 
"And maybe some potato salad." 
Well at least HE still has a sense of humor about the packages not being delivered!
I'm grateful to have a son who has lost himself in service, and doesn't think it's a big deal to celebrate Christmas or his birthday without a gift.
Note to me: It's just stuff. 

I tried to send this treat( the recipe I'm posting today) a month before his b-day. I even saved one square, wrapped it up, taped a little note on it and set it next to my computer. The note said "do not eat till December 29th". A few of my friends saw my note taped to the treat, and were really amused by this. Do you think this is funny? Doesn't everyone do this?   I wanted to see/sample for myself how fresh it would taste if he received it two weeks after I sent it. Um. Well, whatever. For the record, it was still decent. Not super fresh, but if you were, say, living in a foreign country, and you hardly ever got home made treats, you would probably think it was wonderful :), even if it was a little less than fresh. That is, if you ever received your mail.   
Ok, enough of my rant about mail, treats and the lack of timely, or any delivery.
**Update 1/23  Letter home from Stephen. He received two packages on his birthday! His Christmas gifts were a little late. Next Christmas, Ill send in September. Yay! 

On to wishing Stephen a happy birthday!

How did you grow up so fast?? 

About 19 years later....Stephen (on the right) with his last companion, Elder Gallan. 

I'm posting these, because last year when Stephen left on his mission (yes, it's been 11 months!)- He requested Peanut Butter Scotchies for his farewell celebration. You can look back here to that day...
I thought his birthday was an appropriate day to post one of his favorite treats!
Happy birthday, Stephen.
love and miss you,

Peanut Butter Scotchies
aka, Chocolate Scotcheroos
print recipe

1 cup light corn syrup
1 cup white sugar
1 1/2 cups smooth peanut butter
4 cups Rice Krispies*
1 1/2 cups butterscotch chips (or one 11 oz package)**
1 1/2 cups  semi sweet chocolate chips (or one 11-12 oz package)**

Bring sugar and corn syrup to a boil . Add peanut butter and cereal.
Remove from heat, and press into a greased 9x13 pan.
Place the butterscotch and chocolate chips in a glass bowl in microwave for about 1 1/2  minutes, stirring  and place back into microwave for 30 seconds and repeating stirring until all chips are melted. This usually takes about 3-4 minutes total.
Spread the melted chips on tops of the cereal mixture in the pan. let cool and cut into bars.

*The original recipe from Kellogg's uses 6 cups of cereal, I have always used 4.
**They also use only one cup each of the butterscotch and chocolate chips. I like to have a really thick layer of topping, so I use more chips.
-Don't over cook the sugar and Karo Syrup mixture, just bring to a boil and remove from heat. If you over boil, the bars will become very hard and difficult to cut.


Chocolate Walnut Brownies

The holiday cookie extravaganza week continues. I know this isn't a cookie, but I love a little bit of chocolate on my holiday cookie tray. I under baked the brownie a bit and sprinkle with powdered sugar to give it a festive look. This treat comes from The Sweet Melissa Baking Book. It's based off a Julia Child recipe. I guess that says it all. If it's good enough for Julia, it's good enough for me :)

Chocolate Walnut Brownies
adapted slightly from The Sweet Melissa Baking Book
print recipe

1 cup unsalted butter
4 oz. unsweetened chocolate, chopped (I like Ghiradelli)
2 large eggs
1 1/2 cups sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2/3 cups walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place rack in center of oven.
Line a 9x9 pan with foil and grease the foil.
In a double boiler, melt the butter and chocolate, mix until smooth.
Set aside to cool.
In another bowl, beat together the eggs, sugar and vanilla until pale yellow in color. Stir in the chocolate and butter until all ingredients are incorporated. Fold in the flour, kosher salt and walnuts. Do not over mix.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for about 30-35 minutes. When a toothpick is inserted in the middle, it should come out with a few moist crumbs attached. Let brownies cool completely.
After cooled completely, sprinkle with powdered sugar.

-If you are not a fan of walnuts, you may substitute chocolate chips. If you aren't a fan of chocolate chips, I think you dialed the wrong number.


Black and White Brownies

I've had this recipe marked in a cookbook for years. Last week I finally got around to trying it.
Oh my.
I love chocolate cake with vanilla frosting. This is the same idea, subbing a brownie for cake, add vanilla buttercream and then a takeitoverthetop thin chocolate glaze.
You have to try these.

Black and White Brownie
adapted from Centennial Jr. League Cookbook, 1996
print recipe

Brownie Layer
4 ounces unsweetened chocolate
2 sticks (1 cup) butter
4 eggs
2 cups granulated sugar
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt

Vanilla Buttercream Layer
8 tablespoons butter, softened
3 1/2 cups (1 pound) powdered sugar
1/4 cup cream
1 teaspoon vanilla

Chocolate Glaze
4 ounces semisweet chocolate
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) butter

For brownie layer:
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grease and flour a 15 1/2 x 10 1/2- inch pan (next size up from 9x13 pan). Melt the chocolate and butter over hot water in the top of a double broiler.  Cool slightly.  In a separate bowl, beat the eggs until light and lemon-colored.  Gradually add sugar to the egg mixture.  Add the butter and chocolate; fold in the flour and salt. Do not over mix. Mix just until flour is incorporated into wet ingredients. Pour into the prepared pan.  Bake for about 20 minutes or until a toothpick poked in the center comes out clean.  Cool and chill in the refrigerator.

For vanilla buttercream layer:
Cream the butter thoroughly with an electric mixer.  Gradually add the powdered sugar alternately with the cream.  Add the vanilla and beat until very light and fluffy.  Spread evenly over the cooled brownie layer.  Chill in the refrigerator at least 10 minutes.

For chocolate glaze: Melt the chocolate and butter together in top of double broiler over hot water.  Beat well.  Drizzle over the chilled buttercream and smooth out with spatula. Chill 1 hour or longer.  Cut into squares and serve.


  • I used semi-sweet chocolate chips for the glaze layer. 
  • This recipe keeps well in the fridge for about one week if covered with plastic wrap. 

linked to:


Chocolate Chip Cookie 'n Oreo Brownie Bars

Remember last month when I joined the Secret Recipe Club??  So much fun. This month my assignment was to cook something from Katie's blog: Betcha Can't Eat Just One.
Katie lives on the West Coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada.  She is a mom of three who teaches preschool and also runs a daycare a few days a week. Lucky for us, she also finds time to BAKE.  
So, as I perused the recipes on her blog, I thought- this looks good, this too, oh this one. Then I clicked on this recipe. Oh my. Is summer over?  Is it necessary to put on a swimsuit again? You may want to just bookmark this and try it in October, when it's sweat pant season.  
Absolutely incredible. I mean, how does it get better than this? CC cookie dough, a layer of OREO'S (my favorite store bought cookie), caramel, and a layer of brownie dough? Serious sugar. 
Loved it. Thanks Katie. 

Chocolate Chip Cookie 'n Oreo Brownie Bars
Katie at Betcha Can't Eat Just One

1 cup unsalted butter, room temp
1 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 eggs
1 tbsp vanilla extract
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
2 cups chocolate chips, semi sweet
1 package of Oreo cookies
1 package of brownie mix (to be prepared as directed on the box)  Ghiradelli works well or, home made is always best try this recipe
dulce de leche or caramel topping
Preheat the oven to 350 and line a 9X13 pan with parchment paper
Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs and vanilla and mix well.
Add the flour, baking soda and salt and mix just until combined. Fold in chocolate chips.
Press the cookie dough evenly into the pan.
Now place the Oreo's on top of the cookie dough.
Spread or drizzle the dulce de leche or caramel topping on top of the oreos.
Prepare brownie batter as directed. Pour/spread brownie batter on top and smooth it around with a spatula.
Bake for  about 50 minutes. Bars are done when toothpick inserted in center comes out with a bit of a moist crumb attached. Remove from oven and let cool completely, about 2 hours.  
Cut into squares and serve. 

-I like using a home made brownie instead of the box mix. If using a box mix, I think Ghiradelli is the best mix. Katie prefers it as well. 
-You may use Double Stuff Oreo's for the "full strength" version. 
-As for the caramel layer, it's optional. You may use a good quality caramel topping such as Mrs. Richardson's or I love Tom's brand available online, or if you live in Btown, sold at Dick's Market and other local grocers.  OR, you can slowly heat a can of sweetened condensed milk (not evaporated milk)  at a very low temperature, until the milk turns thick and caramel color. See directions and a few different methods for this here.  I used the sweetened condensed milk route, and think in the future, if I'm adding the caramel layer, I'll just use Tom's. 


Feature Friday-White Chocolate Decadence Brownies

Leigh Anne loves to spend time in the kitchen creating yummy treats for her family. Her site is filled with beautiful cooking, decorating, crafting and party ideas. You'll find her at Your Home Based Mom.
White Chocolate Decadence Brownies?
dec-a-dence [dek-uh-duh ns] unrestrained or excessive self indulgence.

Oh my. Leigh Anne is our kind of people.  Check out the recipe here.

 Love her idea for a pink bridal shower...

Have a great Father's Day weekend. Here's what I'll be doing.
That's my (6'3, 14 yr old) baby, catching.


Laurie's Lemon Bars

These two have been best friends for a long time.  We are neighbors, belong to the same church and they went to the same schools- elementary through high school. Now the one on the left is getting married. We love Lauren. She and Brookie have spent hours sitting at my kitchen counter laughing, talking and eating. Lauren's parents Mario and Karen have been our friends for years as well.  Mario is a high adventure kind of guy. Wired. Intense. Up at the crack of dawn, flies helicopters,  loves extreme skiing in the winter and water skiing in the summer. His closet looks like he's in the military, every shirt in place, all the hangers facing the same way (just like my closet :)  Karen is a mom, wife and has her PhD in psychology.  Karen is calm, pensive, patient, loving, an amazing teacher and always willing to listen.  Lauren is the perfect blend of both. She's kind, thoughtful, organized, smart, bright, cheerful, funny, hard working, sincere, charitable, honorable, down-to-earth, naturally beautiful and filled with light! Lucky Brayden.  
So, what do you do when one of your favorite kids gets married?  Have a shower, of course. We served mostly sweets, since it was from 7-8:30 PM. Laurie (click here to read about her chocolate cake and carrot cake) called and offered to make lemon bars.  No skimpy thin layer of lemon here. One full cup of fresh lemon juice. I've tried a lot of lemon bars in my day. These have to be one of the best.  If you love thick, chewy, tangy-sweet bars, they're calling your name. 
Congratulations Lar and Brayden!  We love you.

Laurie's Lemon Bars
print recipe

Preheat oven to 350 degrees
For the crust, cream together:
2 sticks (1/2 lb) butter, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar

2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
Mix until just blended and then press into bottom and 1/2 inch up the sides of a 9x13 pan. Chill for about 30 minutes.  Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until lightly browned. 

For the filling, whisk together:
6 extra large eggs, at room, temperature
3 cups sugar
2 Tablespoons grated lemon zest
1 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup flour
Pour over hot crust and bake 30-35 mintues or until set (not liquid in the middle when jiggled). Let cool and dust with powdered sugar. 


Barefoot Contessa Outrageous Brownies with Ganache Frosting

Made these last week.
Outrageous Brownies? 
Over 2 pounds of chocolate (actually, almost 3 lbs) in one recipe.  That's why.
If these don't satisfy your chocolate craving, I don't know what will.

Barefoot Contessa Outrageous Brownies with Ganache Frosting
adapted slightly from Ina Garten
print recipe

  • 1 pound unsalted butter
  • 1 pound plus 12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
  • 6 ounces unsweetened chocolate
  • 6 extra-large eggs
  • 1 1/2  tablespoons instant coffee granules (I used decaf)
  • 2 tablespoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups sugar
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt


Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
Butter and flour a 12 x 18 x 1-inch baking sheet.
Melt together the butter, 1 pound of chocolate chips, and the unsweetened chocolate in a medium bowl over simmering water. Allow to cool slightly. In a large bowl, stir (do not beat) together the eggs, coffee granules, vanilla, and sugar. Stir the warm chocolate mixture into the egg mixture and allow to cool to room temperature.
In a medium bowl, sift together 2 cups of flour, the baking powder, and salt. Add to the cooled chocolate mixture. Toss the remaining 1/4 cup flour and 12 ounces of chocolate chips in a medium bowl, then add to the chocolate batter. Pour into the baking sheet.
Bake for 20 minutes, then rap the baking sheet against the oven shelf to force the air to escape from between the pan and the brownie dough. Bake for about 15 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean. Do not over bake! 

Ganache Frosting
9 oz. Semisweet chocolate
1 cup whipping cream
2 tablespoons butter
Place all ingredients in saucepan over medium heat.  Whisk until melted and combined.  Pour over brownies after brownies are cooled slightly.  Let sit for about 1 hour, or in refrigerator until set, then cut and serve.  

-The original recipe calls for 3 cups chopped walnuts or pecans and 1 1/4 cups flour.
-These freeze well.  Cut and wrap in Ziploc bags on paper plates.  They will keep for up to two months in the freezer.  


Pan Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies and Jimmer Jersey Giveaway!

If you have known me for any length of time, you have probably had one of these. I originally posted Pan Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies back in September of '08, when I first started blogging. I love sugar cookies. What makes a great sugar cookie? Soft, sweet, tender, great frosting.
This recipe is all of the above combined with the simplicity of a pan cookie. I'll be making these on Friday March 11,   at Macey's in PG. Stop by for a sample!

The giveaway. Do you have it? Jimmer Fever? I asked my son, who is in the MTC (Missionary Training Center) in Provo (Jimmermania HQ) if he has it. Jimmer Fever. He replied in a letter "No Mom, I don't have Jimmer Fever." Not a big surprise. Back in Btown,  I'm here to report no one in my home has Jimmer Fever. Which is a good thing, bc, even though the Utes stink at basketball this year, and have for the past few years, we won't be jumping on the Jimmer Wagon. Won't be wearing any Jimmer jersey's.  What is it with Jimmer (which, btw, my spell check wants to correct to "Dimmer" - ha) "? I know he can make a shot every now and then but, really, do you think he would be Mr. BMOC if his name was say, Ralph?  This actually prompted a discussion I had with Grant late last night (after Mr J scored 52 points in one game).  My public service moment:  Remember back in the 80's when Ty Detmer played at byu, and everyone loved him and started naming their kids "Ty"?? Grant thinks this will start a rash  (no pun intended) of parents naming their kid "Jimmer". Which, I feel personally obligated to tell you THIS IS  A BAD IDEA. If you name your kid Jimmer, and he stinks at basketball, he will get beat up. Don't say I didn't warn you.
I know you're thinking how did a UTE fan end up with two Jimmer Jerseys?  I purchased the Jimmer Jerseys at a fund raiser for a charity. There you have it. And since I don't have the fever, I want to share them with you. Absolutely free. Here are the deets: (Jake HATES it when I say that, so I'll make sure to say it) 

-I have one each : Adult Large, and Youth Large.   
-leave a comment. Not about Jimmer. How about your favorite NCAA tourney memory, ever! Ok, fine, if you don't have a fave tourney memory, go ahead, leave one about Mr. J ;)
-If you are a follower, you get two entries. 
-leave your email address if your signature does not link back to your blog.
-specify which jersey you want- adult or youth. Remember I have only one of each :)
-you have two days to claim the jersey and respond, or another winner will be selected.
-the winners will be announced on Monday, March 14, 2011.
-winner chosen by

Do you think Jimmer would like these? 

Tessa's Pan Cream Cheese Sugar Cookies

1 ½ cups sugar
1 cup butter, softened
8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 egg
1 teaspoon almond extract
½ teaspoon vanilla
½ teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 ½ cups flour

Cream butter, cream cheese and sugar. Add egg, almond extract and vanilla, blend until smooth. Mix in all of the dry ingredients. Do not over mix. Grease a jelly roll pan with cooking spray. Spread the dough into the pan with a long knife. I usually sprinkle some flour on the dough, so it is easier to spread. You can also use a mini rolling pin (floured) to spread the dough. Bake at 350 for 20-25 minutes. Cook just until golden brown.
Let cool completely.

½ cup butter, softened
4 oz cream cheese, softened
3 ½ cups powdered sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
dash of salt
milk or half and half
food coloring, if desired

Cream the butter, cream cheese and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Add the vanilla and salt. Add milk a little at a time, until the frosting is spreading consistency.


Happy Valentines Fudge Brownies

Are you looking for a decadent, rich, ridiculously delicious treat to bake for your Valentine? Best fudge brownies. Ever.
Sheri made these for a little gathering we had at our house yesterday. Quick. Easy. Delicious. One pan makes enough for all of your Valentines. 

    To my Valentine: love you.

Sheri's Fudge Brownies
print recipe

1 1/2 cups butter
6 oz unsweetened chocolate squares
3 cups sugar
3 teaspoons vanilla
6 eggs, beaten
1 teaspoon salt
2 1/4 cups flour

Fudge Frosting:
1/2 cup butter
4 oz semi sweet chocolate baking squares
1 tablespoon vanilla
3-4 cups powdered sugar
dash of salt
3 tablespoons milk, cream or half and half
chopped nuts, if desired

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Melt the butter and unsweetened chocolate over low heat in heavy saucepan on stove. Remove from heat.  Beat in the sugar and vanilla.  Add the eggs. Mix all with wire whisk or large spoon until blended well.  Add the salt and flour and mix just until flour is incorporated into batter. Do not over mix.
Pour into a greased 11x17 jelly roll pan.  Bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Insert toothpick. Toothpick should come out with crumbs attached. Do not overcook if you want a fudge like texture.

Fudge Frosting:
Melt the butter and semi sweet chocolate together. Add 1 tablespoon vanilla.  Beat in the powdered sugar and dash of salt.  Thin with milk or cream.
Mixture should be the consistency between a  frosting and a glaze.
Frost the brownies while still warm, but not hot.
If you want to add nuts, sprinkle chopped nuts on top of brownies right after frosting.

-These brownies freeze well, and are best when cut into SMALL squares. They are the consistency of fudge and are very rich.


Christmas Pecan Shortbread Cookies

Last in the lineup of cookie crazy.
Saved the best for last. I love cookies loaded with nuts.
Grant's Grandmother Lauder's Christmas Pecan Shortbread Cookies. Probably my all time favorite. Versatile too (see tips bottom of page).
So, so, good. Simplicity at its best. Sugar, butter, flour. A little cornstarch and nuts.
Love the way recipes used to be written: "Bake in a slow oven until done".
Typed out, on a real typewriter, using carbon paper. If you are saying "carbon whaaa?" you are probaby young enough to be my kid :) or maybe you are my kid.

Christmas Pecan Shortbread Cookies
Eveline Lauder

1 cup butter, room temperature
2/3 brown sugar
1 cup chopped nuts- pecans, walnuts or a mixture
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 cup cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
pecans for topping cookies, optional

Cream together butter and brown sugar until light and fluffy. Add 1 cup chopped nuts. Measure and sift together flour, cornstarch and salt. Mix dry ingredients into butter-sugar mixture in mixing bowl with mixer set on lowest setting, or use hands and large spoon to mix.
Turn out to lightly floured surface and knead in flour until cracks appear on surface of dough. Using small 1 inch scoop, make balls of dough.
Place on lightly greased cookie sheet. Flatten slightly with fork and press pecan into center of cookie. Bake at 275 for about 20-30 minutes or until cookie is light golden color and cooked through.

-If the dough is too dry after mixing in dry ingredients and will not hold together, add 1-2 tablespoons milk or water.
-You may also roll out this dough and cut into strips and bake.
-This is a firm, crunchy cookie. perfect for dipping in hot cocoa of coffee.
-The cookies may be rolled into balls and baked without flattening. After removing from oven, roll in powdered sugar. Let cool, then roll in powdered sugar again.
-Leave off the pecan on top and dip half of the cookie into melted chocolate, or melt chocolate and drizzle on top of baked and cooled cookie.
-These cookie freeze well. They also keep well in a cool place, covered, for about a month.


Dorie Greenspan's Chewy Chunky Blondies

While buying chocolate chips one day, I came across Bittersweet Chocolate Chips. I held onto them until I found a recipe made just for bittersweet chips. Saw this recipe on several blogs. It was a recipe assigned to a group that cooks/blogs their way through Dorie Greenspan's "Baking From My Home to Yours".
Most Blondies are the usual basic cc cookie dough with or w/o the chips spread into a 9x13 pan. Ho-hum. These bars are anything but. Dorie's Chewy, Chunky Blondies should be named: Chewy-Chunky-Coco-Nutty-Choco-Toffe-CanIhaveanotherplease-Bars.

Dorie's Chewy, Chunky Blondies
Dorie Greenspan “Baking: From My Home to Yours”
printable recipe

2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 sticks (8 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups (packed) light brown sugar
1/2 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
6 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped into chips, or 1 cup store-bought chocolate chips
1 cup butterscotch chips or Heath Toffee Bits, I used Toffee Bits
1 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut

Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Butter a 9×13-inch baking pan and put it on a baking sheet.
Whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
Beat the butter on medium speed in a large bowl until smooth and creamy. Add both sugars and beat for another 3 minutes, or until well incorporated. Add the eggs one by one, beating for 1 minute after each addition, then beat in the vanilla. Reduce the mixer speed to low and add the dry ingredients, mixing just until they disappear into the batter. Using a rubber spatula, stir in the chips, nuts and coconut. Scrape the batter into the buttered pan .
Bake for about 40 minutes, or until a knife inserted into the center of the Blondie comes out clean. The blondies should pull away from the sides of the pan a little and the top golden brown.

-I lined the pan with foil, then sprayed with cooking spray. After the bars were baked, I waited about 10 minutes, then lifted the whole pan out, and finished cooling.


Oreo Brownies and Cookbook Giveaway!

Remember the Cranberry Salsa I made back in December? Loved that recipe. It came from this cute book-

I purchased "Bliss" last month, and found this recipe for Oreo Brownies. Since Oreos are my fave store bought cookie, and I love brownies, I had to give this recipe a try. They were quick to put together and a real kid pleaser. More like a bar cookie than a brownie, similar to Nordy Bars. Great for an easy semi-home made treat.

The cookbook: I loved the clean look of this book. Love that's it's a local author (Utah) and thought A Bountiful Kitchen readers would love it too. Great cookbook to add to your collection!

To Enter/Win (the power of pos thinking, right?)
1. Leave a comment sharing what you love most about SPRING. It's almost here! One entry per person.
2. If you post a link to this giveaway on your blog, three entries for you.
3. Please leave each of your comments separately.
4. You have until Wednesday March 17th at midnight to enter.

Winner selected by The Random Counter and announced on Thursday March 18th.

Oreo Brownies

1 package Oreo cookies, chopped
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1 cup chocolate chips, milk or dark
1 cup vanilla or white chocolate chips
1 1/2 cup mini marshmallows
1 cup chopped walnuts
1 (14 oz) can sweetened condensed milk

Preheat oven to 350.

Line an 9 x 13 pan with foil, leaving an overhang of foil around the edges. Lightly grease the pan.

In a large bowl, mix the chopped cookies with the butter. Pour half the mixture into the prepared pan. Sprinkle with the chips, marshmallows, and nuts. Top with the remaining cookie mixture. Pour the sweetened condensed milk evenly over the top.

Bake for about 25-30 minutes, or until lightly golden. Let cool to room temperature and lift the bars from the pan. Peel back the foil and cut into serving pieces.


-I omitted the nuts, partly bc I thought most kids don't love nuts, and partly bc I thought nuts with this combo didn't sound good.
-I used closer to 1 1/2 cups each of choc chips and white chips, and used closer to 2 cups marshmallows total.
-Also, think I would like this better cooked in an 8x8 or 9x9 pan, the brownies were a little on the thin side for me.


Black Bottom Brownies and GIVEAWAY

First. If you love cream cheese brownies and have a New Years resolution to stay away from really sinful desserts, exit this page. Now.
If not, and you want to enter A Bountiful Kitchen's first giveaway of the year, stick around.
I dropped a plate of these brownies off to a darling group of 16-18 year old girls this week. The feedback - well, let's just say, the plate came back empty. This recipe came from the "Sweet Melissa Baking book". Everything I have tried out of this book has been a winner. The last recipe I made and loved: Butterscotch Cashew Bars. Melissa Murphy is the owner/chef of the Sweet Melissa Patisseries in Brooklyn, NY.

Black Bottom Brownies are not for lily livered chocolate/cream cheese lovers. This is quite possibly the most dense cream cheese brownie I have ever eaten. Since I am not a huge cream cheese dessert fan, I always like to top anything cream cheese with frosting. So here is the run down: thick, dense brownie layer (includes 6 eggs and 1/2 lb butter), topped with a pound of cream cheese, 6 MORE eggs (yes, 12 eggs total), and two cups of chocolate chips. Add a layer of chocolate frosting.

Hello. Bring on the Lipator.

Giveaway time! Leave a comment. Tell us: What is your hope for 2010?
One entry per person. Three entries if you become a follower or if you are already a follower. Wow, finally a reward for being a follower! Don't worry I won't tell your mother. Please place the entries separately. The Random Counter will choose a winner at the end of the day on Saturday, January 16th.
Oh - the prize? Your very own copy of "The Sweet Melissa Baking Book".
Good Luck!

Black Bottom Brownies
adapted from The Sweet Melissa Baking Book by Melissa Murphy

For the brownie bottom:
5 ounces unsweetened chocolate
½ pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter
1 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon kosher salt
4 large eggs plus 2 large egg yolks
2 cups sugar
1 tablespoon pure vanilla

Cheesecake layer:

1 pound (two 8-ounce packages) cream cheese, at room temperature
1 ½ cups sugar
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
6 large eggs
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups semisweet chocolate chips

Position a rack in the lower third of your oven. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Lightly butter a 9×13-inch pan. Line the pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil.

In the top of a double boiler over simmering, not boiling water, melt the chocolate and the butter, stirring to combine. Set aside to cool to warm. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, egg yolks, sugar, and vanilla until smooth. Pour the chocolate mixture into the egg mixture and combine with a whisk. Add the flour mixture to the chocolate/egg mixture and stir until just combined. Pour the brownie batter into the prepared pan, and spread evenly.

Cheesecake layer:

In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together cream cheese, sugar, and the salt until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Add the eggs, mix well after each addition. Scrape down the sides of the bowl. Stir in vanilla. In separate bowl, toss chocolate chips with 1 tablespoon flour. Fold chocolate chips into cream cheese mixture.

Pour the cheesecake mixture over the brownie layer. Bake for about 1 hour and 10 minutes, or until lightly golden. The brownie layer will be set, but will still stick to a knife when inserted into center of brownies. Do not over bake. Remove to a wire rack to cool. Cool completely. (If you want to speed up this process, place in freezer for about 1/2 to 1 hour after cooled a while on the counter.

Chocolate Frosting:
1/2 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3-4 cups powdered sugar
dash salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 cup milk

Cream butter, add cocoa and powdered sugar. Add salt and vanilla. Beat until smooth, adding milk until desired consistency. Add more powdered sugar if too thin, a little more milk if too thick. Spread on top of brownies when completely cooled.

Top with chocolate frosting if desired. May be served cold or at room temperature.

-This recipe makes a full 9x13 pan. It is hard to see in the pics, but the brownies raise to almost the top of the pan.
-The recipe says to cut the brownies into 12 pieces. hmmm. You would have to be a complete GLUTTON to want to eat 1/12th of this pan of brownies by yourself.
I think about 20-24 brownies per pan.