Tag Archives: Bar Cookies

Toasted Pine Nut and Milk Chocolate Short Bread Squares

Toasted Pine Nut and Milk Chocolate Short Bread Squares

How much do I love short bread? Let me count the ways…

Actually no, don’t worry, I’ll spare you that tedium, but suffice it to say these did not disappoint this short bread lover at all! Matt and I spent the week between Christmas and New Year’s taking off work and bumming around Manhattan, where we did some personal shopping for no real reason other than we just felt like it. I know I’m really late to the party, but I finally picked up Ovenly, the book that spills the secrets of the successful Brooklyn bakery by the same name.

Toasted Pine Nut and Milk Chocolate Short Bread Squares

What to make first? Their short bread recipe caught my eye, in no small part because I had some pine nuts to use up, and who wants to throw pine nuts into the garbage, ever? Expensive little nuts, those are.

Toasted Pine Nut and Milk Chocolate Short Bread Squares

My regulars know I’m not a big milk chocolate fan, so I seriously debated subbing in semi-sweet here, but in the end decided to try their version. I’m very glad I did! The milk chocolate really plays off the almost-bitter quality of the pine nuts and it’s a very well-complemented relationship. Also, the short bread itself is barely sweet (just sweet enough) so you welcome the near-cloying sweetness of the milk chocolate. Nothing was even a little bit out of balance. I can assure you, these will get made again. Enjoy!

Toasted Pine Nut and Milk Chocolate Short Bread Squares

Source: Ovenly by Agatha Kulaga and Erin Patinkin

Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
½ tsp ground cinnamon
3 tbs toasted pine nuts
2 oz. milk chocolate, chopped
1 ¼ cups cold, unsalted butter, cubed
½ cup granulated sugar

Directions:
Preheat your oven to 275 F. Grease an 8×8” baking pan.
In a small bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, cinnamon, pine nuts, and milk chocolate.
In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the cold butter and sugar on medium speed until light and barely fluffy, about 2 minutes. Be careful not to overbeat the butter. Turn the mixer off. Add the flour mixture and turn the mixer back on low speed, mixing until just incorporated.
Remove the dough from the bowl and press it evenly into the prepared baking pan. Bake 50 to 55 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown.
Cool completely, then cut into 16 squares. Use a spatula to remove them from the pan.

S’Mores Oat Bars

S'Mores Oat Bars

Happy Fourth of July!! At the risk of being obvious and perhaps a little unoriginal, I’m blogging something s’mores today. It seems the childhood campfire obsession just never, ever gets old, even that said campfire from our childhoods was proverbial at best. Adults just don’t seem to ever outgrow that graham crackers-milk-chocolate-marshmallows combination. If you’ve ever looked at Pinterest, then you know that our beloved S’more has gone on to take on more iterations than our human minds can fathom – it seems you can take *any* dessert and make it into a s’more.

marshmallows and chocolate chips for S'Mores Oat Bars

So today I’m sharing a recipe I found from King Arthur Flour, which called it a S’Mores Granola Bar. With all due respect to KAF, this is not a granola bar, my friends. I just can’t call it that, because using the phrase granola connotes healthiness, and this little treat is not healthy or virtuous in any way. It’s just a delicious cookie that will remind you of s’mores. That’s it.

S'Mores Oat Bars

And that’s totally okay! Enjoy it for what it is, just don’t delude yourself into thinking you or your kids are getting any real nutrition here. Because you’re not. But still, it’s delicious and you should absolutely enjoy a treat tonight after your grill fest! And now I shall sign off, wishing you and yours a wonderful and safe Fourth of July celebration! As for me and Matt, we will be hanging shelves and rearranging furniture. Sigh…

S'Mores Oat Bars

Source: The King Arthur Flour Baker’s Companion

Ingredients:
6 tbs unsalted butter
¼ cup firmly packed brown sugar
6 tbs maple syrup or honey
2 ¼ cups rolled, old-fashioned oats
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ tsp salt
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1 ¼ cups mini marshmallows

Directions:
In a medium-to-large-sized saucepan set over medium heat, melt and stir together the butter, sugar, and syrup, cooking until the sugar dissolves. Stir in the oats, flour, salt, and graham cracker crumbs.
Press slightly more than half of the mixture into a lightly greased 9×9” square baking pan. Let cool completely.
Preheat your oven to 350 F. Sprinkle the chocolate chips evenly over the top, then the marshmallows. Top with the remaining crust mixture. I found this easiest to do just by dropping chunks of it evenly over the whole thing with your hands. Don’t try to spread it evenly – it won’t do that anyway, and you’ll just mess up your marshmallows by trying.
Bake the bars 15-20 minutes. Remove from the oven and let them rest for 20 minutes, then if you can, cut them into squares while they are still slightly warm. They taste excellent room temperature though.