Saturday, January 1, 2011

Raspberry Streusel Bars

Raspberry Streusel Bars
2 ½ cups (12 ½ ounces) unbleached all-purpose flour
2/3 cup (about 4 ¾ ounces) granulated sugar
½ teaspoon salt
16 Tablespoons (2 sticks) plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into ½ inch pieces and softened to cool room temperature
¼ cup packed (1 ¾ ounces) light or brown sugar
½ cup (1 ½ ounces) old-fashioned rolled oats
½ cup (2 ounces) pecans, chopped fine
¾ cup (8 ½ ounces) raspberry preserves
¾ cup (3 ½ ounces) fresh raspberries (or frozen)
1 Tablespoon lemon juice from 1 lemon

1. Adjust oven rack to middle position; heat oven to 375 degrees. Cut 18” long piece of foil and fold in half length wise to 8-inch width. Fit foil into 13 X 9” baking dish, pushing it into corners and up sides of pan; allow excess to hang over both sides. Cut 14 inch piece of foil and fit into width of pan in same manner, perpendicular to first sheet. Spray foil-lined pan with nonstick cooking spray.

2. In bowl of stand mixer fitted with paddle attachment, mix flour, granulated sugar, and salt at low speed until combined, about 5 seconds. With machine on low, add 16 Tablespoons butter 1 piece at a time, then continue mixing on low until mixture resembles damp sand, 1 to 1 ½ minutes.

3. Measure 1 ¼ cups flour mixture into medium bowl and set aside; distribute remaining flour mixture evenly in bottom of prepared baking pan. Using hands or flat bottomed measuring cup, press flour mixture into even layer to form bottom crust. Bake until edges begin to brown, 14-18 minutes.

4. While crust is baking, add brown sugar, oats and pecans to reserved flour mixture; toss to combine. Work in remaining 2 Tablespoons butter by rubbing mixture between fingers until butter is fully incorporated. Pinch mixture with fingers to create hazelnut-sized clumps; set streusel aside.

5. Combine preserves, raspberries and lemon juice in small bowl; mash with fork until combined but some berry pieces remain.

6. Spread raspberry filling over hot crust; sprinkle streusel topping evenly over berry filling. Do not press streusel down. Return pan to oven and bake until topping is deep golden brown and filling is bubbling, 22-25 minutes. Cool to room temperature on wire rack, 1-2 hours; remove from baking pan by lifting foil extensions. Using chef’s knife, cut into squares and serve.

-I used frozen berries as the fresh ones looked kind of funky at Food Lion.
-This is from Cook’s Illustrated, so of course there was a whole page article previous to the recipe about raspberry bars, but I don’t want to have to type all of that. Basically it was saying how raspberry bars should be “tender,” “fruity,” and “crunchy.”
-I made these for our contractors who are laboring tirelessly on our master suite and they were a HIT. These things are incredibly sinful.

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