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Sunday Supper Movement

Bars

My husband absolutely loves cheesecake, but I rarely make it – or really any other cakes lately. Mostly, I don’t have time for desserts that are completed in multiple steps, whether it’s baking the crust and then the cake, or baking the cake and then frosting it. I’ve been too busy lately and frankly, I tend to run out of steam by the time I hit that second step, sometime hours later. I drag myself through it, but the baking process is no longer enjoyable at that point.

Enter these Sopapilla Cheesecake Bars. All of the great flavor of cheesecake, plus the wonderful cinnamon-sugar of the Mexican pastry, much less fuss. While I love the graham cracker crust on regular cheesecakes, the crispy cinnamon sugar on top of these bars more than makes up for it being missing. They were delicious.

This recipe starts almost a week of Mexican recipes. I hope that you find some inspiration for any upcoming Cinco de Mayo celebrations in today’s post, the #SundaySupper collection at the bottom of this post, as well as the recipes that posted this week.

Sopapilla-Inspired Cheesecake Bars

Adapted from Pillsbury

Makes at least 16 servings

Ingredients:

  • 2-8 oz. cans Pillsbury crescent rolls
  • 2-8oz. packages cream cheese, softened
  • 1 1/2 c. granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 stick unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 Tbs. ground cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350°F.

In an ungreased 9×13 inch glass baking dish, unroll 1 can of crescent rolls, carefully stretching to cover the bottom of baking dish. Pinch together perforations to seal.

In a large bowl – or the bowl of a stand mixer – beat cream cheese and 1 cup of sugar until thoroughly combined. Add vanilla. Spread evenly over crescent rolls in the baking dish.

Unroll other can of crescent rolls, stretching to cover cream cheese layer while simultaneously pinching together perforations to seal.

Pour melted butter evenly over top of crescent rolls.

In a small dish, mix remaining 1/2 cup of sugar and the cinnamon. Sprinkle evenly over top. It will be a nice, thick layer of cinnamon sugar.

Bake for 30 minutes, until center is set. Allow to cool on stove or a wire rack for 30-60 minutes. Transfer to the fridge to chill before cutting.

Store covered in the refrigerator.

More easy Cinco de Mayo recipes, compliments of the #SundaySupper tastemakers:

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Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

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You guys, I have a confession to make. In all of my years of baking, I’ve never made a blondie. It’s not that I don’t like them – I do! I do my happy dance every time The Cookie Man (as we affectionately call a friend) brings them to monthly game night. I pin and bookmark loads of blondie recipes, but somehow, they always get overlooked when I plan my baking.

So a week or two ago, as my daughter was started to get stir-crazy one weekend, I finally made a batch. Or maybe it’s more accurate to say I supervised the making of a batch. Miss. Hazelnut – 4 in just a few weeks – did almost everything herself. I was super impressed with how well she did cracking eggs, measuring and pouring, and stirring everything together. Really, the only help I provided was leveling some measuring cups and helping her scrape the bottom of the bowl. I love that she’s getting older now and actually able to help in the kitchen. And she loves that special time with me (or with my mom, who visits often), when we can keep her little brother distracted with something else.

These blondies were a hit with everyone, especially the kiddos, who were quite generous with the M&Ms. But I’m not surprised. It’s a Smitten Kitchen recipe, so of course we loved it!

Recipe Note: I used a spatula and hand-mixed the batter for the blondies, but feel free to use a hand or stand mixer.

Valentine’s Day Blondies

Adapted from How to Cook Everything via Smitten Kitchen

Makes a 9×13 Pan

Ingredients:

  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, melted; plus more for pan
  • 2 c. brown sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 c. Valentine’s M&Ms (a little less than a 10 oz. bag)

Butter a 9×13 pan and set aside.

In a large bowl, mix melted butter and brown sugar until smooth. Add egg and vanilla and stir until combined. Stir in salt and flour. Finally, fold in about half of the M&Ms, adding more if desired.

Pour into prepared pan and sprinkle with remaining M&M, more or less, as you’d like. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until middle is set and edges are beginning to brown.

Allow to cool before cutting.

Store in an air-tight container at room temperature.

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Are you ready to get inundated with Halloween candy tomorrow night? Maybe it’s leftover candy or maybe it’s the loot your kiddos came home with. How much will you have, and how quickly will it disappear? Is dropping the excess off at work an option for you? Or will it go uneaten for weeks or months, as your coworkers have their own stashes at home they’re eating through?

Want to know a secret? It disappears a lot quicker, especially at work, when you cook or bake with it. You’re bringing something new to the table, something that nobody is sick of (yet). With that in mind, the #SundaySupper crew are sharing some of their favorite recipes for using up leftover Halloween candy.

I went with a no-bake dessert – an rich, peanut buttery, chocolatey bar made with Rice Krispies cereal and topped with our favorite candy bars. I used KitKats and Twix, but peanut butter cups would be amazing on this. It takes only a few minutes to put together, and when I sent it to work with my hubby, was gone in just a few hours. I call that a win.

leftover-candy-peanut-butter-chocolate-crunch-bars

Don’t forget to check out the rest of the #SundaySupper recipes designed to help you use up your Halloween candy, at the bottom of this post.

Leftover Candy Peanut Butter Chocolate Crunch Bars

Adapted from Averie Cooks

Makes 16 large squares

Ingredients for the Peanut Butter Crunch Base:

  • cooking spray
  • 1 c. creamy peanut butter (not natural peanut butter)
  • 1/2 c. light corn syrup
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1/4 c. light brown sugar, packed
  • 1 Tbs. vanilla extract
  • 3 c. Rice Krispies cereal

Ingredients for the Chocolate Crunch Topping

  • 1 c. semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1/4 c. creamy peanut butter (same used for the base)
  • 1 c. Rice Krispies cereal
  • Leftover Halloween candy, 1 to 1 1/2 cups chopped, or about 8-15 snack-sized bars (I used a mix of Kit Kats and Twix)

Prep: Line an 8×8 pan with aluminum foil. Spray bottom and sides with cooking spray and set aside.

Make the Base: In a large microwave-safe bowl, add peanut butter, corn syrup and both sugars. Microwave for 45 seconds. Stir, and microwave another 45-60 seconds, until well combined and the sugars are mostly melted. Stir in vanilla. Finally, stir in Rice Krispies cereal. Pour into prepared pan, evening out with a spatula.

Make the Topping: In a microwave-safe bowl, add chocolate chips and peanut butter. Microwave for 30 seconds, stir, and pop back in for another 30 seconds. Stir until chocolate is completed melted and mixed complete with peanut butter. Add cereal to coat. Layer on top of peanut butter base, using a spatula to press evenly.

Finish: Quickly add leftover chopped up Halloween candy, pressing slightly into still-warm chocolate-peanut butter layer. Allow to set for an hour or two, refrigerating if needed.

Store at room temperature. Bars will keep for at least a week.

leftover-candy-peanut-butter-chocolate-crunch-bars

Looking for more ideas on using up your Halloween candy? Check out the below recipes. And big thanks to T.R. Crumbly from Gluten Free Crumbley for hosting this weekend’s event!

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Bars

Brownies

Cakes

Confections

Cookies

Snacks

Supper

Sunday Supper MovementJoin the #SundaySupper conversation on twitter on Sunday! We tweet throughout the day and share recipes from all over the world. Our weekly chat starts at 7:00 pm ET. Follow the #SundaySupper hashtag and remember to include it in your tweets to join in the chat. To get more great Sunday Supper Recipes, visit our website or check out our Pinterest board. Would you like to join the Sunday Supper Movement? It’s easy. You can sign up by clicking here: Sunday Supper Movement.

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What's_Baking_BadgeEvery month I think things are going to settle down, and every month seems to get busier and more chaotic than the last. I can’t tell you how many times I earmarked a day on the calendar to make bars for this month’s What’s Baking? theme, how many times I pulled butter out of the fridge to soften only to put it back in the fridge later that day.

Thankfully, this month’s hostess, Nichole from Cookaholic Wife, was completely understanding when I emailed her this past weekend to see if I could get this post out a few days late. My in-laws, husband and daughter had just went to the movies and my Little Man was down for a nap, so I was going to whip up the bars, start this post, and hope the photos came out well. Nichole had agreed to to my plan just minutes before and the butter was melted… and Little Man woke up.

Needless to say, I managed to get the bars baked, photographed them before the family could eat them, and here I am, night before it’s due, writing my post. Big thanks to Nichole for letting me submit late!

Cranberry Shortbread Bars

These bars are part of my Operation Clean Out Freezer. Spring cleaning. My two freezers is in desperate need of it. (There’s inspiration for ya!)

Every year, I stash an extra bag of cranberries in my freezer for some recipe that is sure to strike my fancy during the year. As I was baking this, I couldn’t help thinking that this would be a great recipe for fall. The tart cranberries have a touch of sweetness from the sugar (and of course, the slightly sweet shortbread crust and streusel). This recipe is halved from the version in Fine Cooking Magazine, and rewritten, but not heavily adapted.

Cranberry Shortbread Bars

Adapted from Fine Cooking, Dec 2006 (p. 75)

Makes 16 Bars

Ingredients:

  • 11 1/2 Tbs. unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
  • 1 c. granulated sugar, divided
  • 1/3 tsp. salt
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 1/2 c. + 1 1/2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
  • 6 oz. fresh or frozen cranberries

Make Crust: Line an 8×8 inch pan with aluminum foil and set aside.

In a medium bowl, combine unsalted butter, 1/4 c. plus 2 Tbs. sugar, and salt. Whisk in egg yolk. Transfer 2/3-3/4 of it to the prepared pan, pressing along the bottom to cover. Use a fork to prick all over. Refrigerate for 30 minutes, or until firm.

While crust is in fridge, move a baking rack to upper third of the oven and preheat to 325F.

Bake the Crust & Prep the Rest: Remove from fridge and bake crust for 18-22 minutes, until crust is set and edges are beginning to brown.

While crust cooks, combine remaining dough with 2 Tbs. sugar, crumbling with clean fingers. Set aside.

In a small pan over medium heat, combine remaining 1/2 c. sugar, cranberries, and 2 Tbs. water. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly so the sugar doesn’t burn. Lower heat slightly and continue to simmer until cranberries break down and mixture becomes a thick syrup, 5-10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

When crust is ready, remove oven and allow to cool slightly. Increase temperature on oven to 350F.

Assemble and Bake the Bars: When crust has cooled slightly, top with cranberry mixture, spreading to cover. Crumble streusel topping throughout.

Bake in preheated oven for 25-30 minutes, until golden brown and set. Do not overcook.

Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack for at least an hour before cutting.

Serve at room temperature.

Store in an airtight container for up to a week.

Cranberry Shortbread Bars_Pint

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Peanut Butter S'mores Bars

What's_Baking_BadgeI was pretty excited when Joanna of Kosher Kitchen chose Baking with S’mores Variations as the theme for this month’s What’s Baking? To me, s’mores are a summer dessert. We enjoy sitting outside around a fire pit, toasting marshmallows and making old-fashioned s’mores. I love the flavors, but apart from some s’mores cupcakes (which are amazing, by the way), I haven’t played with the flavors too much. I was thrilled to be able to try out one of the many s’mores-inspired recipes I’ve bookmarked over the past few years.

I, of course, couldn’t help but to choose what might be the most sugar-laden dessert I could find – complete with peanut butter baking chips, two types of candy, and a jar of marshmallow fluff. The photo really does not do these bars justice – they’re super rich and stayed soft, even after a few days on the counter. They definitely we a good start to the workweek.

Peanut Butter S’mores Oatmeal Cookie Bars

Adapted from Mom On Timeout

Makes 24 bars

Ingredients:

  • 12 Tbs. unsalted butter, melted
  • 2 c. light brown sugar
  • ½ c. creamy peanut butter
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 Tbs. vanilla extract
  • ¾ c. graham cracker crumbs (from about 4 graham crackers)
  • 1 c. old-fashioned oats
  • 1 Tbs. cornstarch
  • 2½ tsp. baking powder
  • ½ tsp. salt
  • 1½ c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 c. peanut butter baking chips
  • 7 full-sized Hershey’s chocolate bars
  • 1 7-oz. jar marshmallow fluff
  • 1 c. quartered Reese’s miniatures

Make the Dough: In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream butter and sugar until well combined. With the mixer still running on medium speed, add in peanut butter, eggs, and vanilla – all one at a time. Scrape down sides of the bowl.

Reduce speed to low and one at a time, add graham cracker crumbs, oats, cornstarch, baking powder, salt, and flour. Scrape down sides of the bowl as necessary. Finally, mix in peanut butter baking chips.

Chill dough for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 F. Line a 9×13 baking pan with parchment paper and set aside.

Assemble & Bake: Remove dough from fridge. Pour ⅔ of the dough into the prepared pan. Spread into an even layer. Top with Hershey’s bars, then marshmallow fluff.

Stir Reese’s miniatures into remaining dough, and drop onto fluff layer. The dough won’t completely cover the fluff.

Bake for 25-30 minutes, until golden. Remove from oven, and let cool completely before cutting.

Serve at room temperature (or, as my hubby preferred, microwave for 10 seconds to make extra warm and gooey) and store in an airtight container.

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I was super excited when this month’s What’s Baking? theme turned out to be Baking with Fruit, chosen by Jaida at Sweet Beginnings. The weather is beautiful and the local farms are opening up for picking. There’s nothing better than fruit fresh from the farm.

While it’s a little early for blueberry picking here, I had a stash in the freezer that I wanted to use up to make room for more farm-fresh fruit. While these bars called for fresh blueberries, my flash-frozen berries worked just fine. (I’d caution against purchased bags of fruit, which would have a higher water content than the flash-frozen ones I used.)

These bars were really out of this world – I don’t think I can say enough about them. The photos, with my messy cutting, don’t do them justice. The bars are super soft and just slightly sweet. I was surprised at the subtle sweetness of the crust/crumble and the bright, fresh blueberry flavor. These are the sort of dessert you can easily return to for seconds, thirds, and fourths. Which I did until I finally wrapped up several pieces to take to a friend.

In the future, I’d consider serving these warmed slightly, with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top.

Blueberry Shortbread Bars

Blueberry Crumb Bars

Adapted from All Recipes via Smitten Kitchen

Makes a 9×13 pan

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 c. granulated sugar, divided
  • 1 tsp. baking powder
  • 3 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into 1 Tbs. pieces
  • zest and juice of one lemon, divided
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 c. granulated sugar
  • 4 tsp. cornstarch
  • 4 c. fresh blueberries (4 pints)

Prep: Preheat oven to 375F. Grease a 9×13 pan and set aside.

Make the Crust/Crumble: In a medium bowl, combine 1 c. sugar, flour, baking powder and salt. Using a pastry cutter, cut butter, lemon zest and egg into the dry ingredients. Dough will be crumbly.

Make the Blueberry Filling: In another bowl, stir together lemon juice, remaining 1/2 c. sugar and cornstarch. Gently fold in blueberries.

Assemble: Pour half of flour mixture into prepared baking pan. Gently pat into an even layer. Top with blueberry mixture and sprinkle evenly with remaining flour mixture.

Bake for 40-60 minutes, until top is slightly browned.

Remove from oven and allow to cool completely before slicing. (Smitten Kitchen recommends chilling bars so that it’s easier and cleaner to cut)

Store, covered with plastic wrap, at room temperature or in the fridge. At room temp, the bars kept fresh for at least 3 days (at which point I had eaten or gifted the entire pan).

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Dark Chocolate Almond Brownies

Although I don’t follow any special diet, apart from trying to make healthy choices, I’m fining the an increasing number of friends and family are changing their eating habits. Recently, a very good friend started eating gluten-free. I know it’s been a bit of a challenge for their family, but it’s also been an adjustment for me as I’ve brought dishes to their house or invited them over for a meal. For me, it’s a change in the way I bake and also an education process. So many foods are naturally gluten-free, but it’s taken a little bit of reading for me to feel comfortable picking out meals without double-checking the ingredients. Baking has been more of a challenge, since you can’t really swap in and out ingredients as easily. It’s too much of an exact science. Luckily, I’ve been following Jenn Cuisine for a long time, and knew she’s help me out with a good recipe.

These brownies were a decadant, gluten-free treat. While a slightly different texture than most brownies, these were super moist and rich. The almond flavor was subtle but enjoyable.

Dark Chocolate Almond Brownies

Adapted from Gluten Free Goddess via Jenn Cuisine

Makes an 9×9 pan

Ingredients:

  • 150 g. dark chocolate, roughly chopped
  • 8 Tbs. (1 stick) unsalted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 c. light brown sugar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla paste (or, seeds scraped from 1/2 a vanilla bean)
  • 3/4 c. almond meal
  • 1/4 c.  cocoa powder
  • 1/1 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • confectioners’ sugar, for dusting (optional)

Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 9×9 inch baking pan or pyrex dish with parchment paper and set aside.

In a double broiler, melt chocolate, butter and vanilla, stirring until smooth.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk eggs until foamy. Continue whisking and gradually add sugar, until sugar is incorporated.

When chocolate and butter are melted, slowly add to eggs-sugar mixture, continuously whisking. Sprinkle in almond meal, cocoa powder, salt and baking powder. Stir with a whisk until ingredients are thoroughly incorporated.

Pour mixture into prepared pan and bake 30-40 minutes, until a toothpick or knife inserted into the center comes out clean.

Serve warm or at room temperature (the longer it sits, the cleaner the edges are when you cut). Dust with confectioner’s sugar, if desired.

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Smores Brownies

My marshmallows got a little burnt (lesson learned: don’t multitask while something is under the broiler!) but these brownies were killer. Five of us ate our way through more of a pan than I’d like to admit. If you have kids, it’s a great alternative to actually assembling and roasting s’mores. If you don’t, well, it’s just awesome. I can’t wait to make this again during the holiday season!

This blog post is part of my ongoing contribution to the 12 Weeks of Christmas Treats hosted by Meal Planning Magic. Check out the links below for more holiday treats from my blogging friends.

S’mores Brownies

2013_12.Weeks.Of.Christmas.Treats

Adapted from Kraft via Good Thymes and Good Food

Makes a 9×13 in. pan

Ingredients: 

  • 10 graham crackers, broken in half (20 squares total)
  • 3/4 c. unsalted butter
  • 4 oz. unsweetened chocolate
  • 2 c. granulated sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 c. all-purpose flour
  • 2½ c. mini marshmallows
  • 1 c. semi-sweet or dark chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350F.

Line a 9×13 in. baking sheet with parchment paper and spray with cooking spray. Lay 15 graham crackers along the bottom, breaking them and overlapping sides as necessary to cover bottom of pan. Set aside.

Break remaining 5 graham crackers squares into pieces and set aside, with the chocolate chips and marshmallows.

Put butter and unsweetened chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl. Microwave on 30 second intervals, stirring every 30 seconds, until melted, About 2 minutes total. Whisk in sugar, eggs and vanilla. Stir in flour until just incorporated.

Pour into prepared pan. Bake for 30 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out with moist crumbles attached. Do not overbake!

Remove from oven and sprinkle marshmallows and chocolate chips over the top. Bake for another 3-5 minutes, until marshmallows begin to puff up. Remove from oven and turn on broiler. Press graham cracker pieces into the marshmallows. Bake for another minute or so, until marshmallows are golden brown.

Remove from oven and cool completely on a wire rack.

Use the parchment paper to life brownies out of pan and onto a cutting board. Use a sharp knife, warmed briefly under hot water,  to cut the brownies. Wipe the knife and rewarm under hot water as necessary.

Store in an airtight container.



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Know what makes me sad? It makes me sad that so many people aren’t big fans of coconut. I love the sweet taste, which makes me think about days at the beach. I’m drawn to recipes where coconut, sweetened or unsweetened, is one of the main ingredients but I’ve held back from baking them because of dislikes. I mean, I’d love to polish off a batch of coconut muffins or cupcakes by myself, but that probably won’t help me look good in the bridesmaid dress I’ll be wearing in October.

I was thrilled when I had the chance to make these coconut macadamia nut bars, a last minute dessert for a recent Wine & Cheese Party (read about it later this week) and for a last minute Easter invitation. As a bonus, I miraculously had all ingredients on hand and was able to skip the grocery store. Between the two events, I had no leftovers and one recipe request. I consider that a coconut success!

Coconut Macadamia Nut Bars

Adapted from The Mixer Bible (p. 278)

Makes a 9 x 13 inch pan

Ingredients for the Shortbread Crust:

  • 2 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1 c. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
  • 2/3 c. confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/2 tsp. salt

Ingredients for the Coconut Macadamia Nut Topping:

  • 1 c. firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 c. unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/4 c. whipping cream
  • 1 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 2/3 c. shredded/flaked sweetened coconut
  • 1 1/3 c. macadamia nuts, halves or chopped into large pieces

Instructions:

  1. Prep: Preheat oven to 350F. Line a 9×13 inch baking pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil so that there is an inch or two overhang on either end. Grease the lining and set aside.
  2. Make the Shortbread: In a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat all ingredients on medium-low speed (#4) until dough starts to come together. Turn out into prepared pan, and press into an even layer along the bottom. Bake for 18-25 minutes until pale golden. Move to a wire rack to cool slightly and lower heat to 325F.
  3. Make the Coconut Macadamia Nut Topping: In a mixer bowl fitted with the paddle attachment on medium-low speed (#4), combine brown sugar, melted butter, whipping cream, salt, and lemon juice. Remove bowl from mixer and fold in coconut and macadamia nuts. Pour onto prepared shortbread crust. Gently (because the crust is still soft) spread the topping so that most of the shortbread is covered (it will settle a little and fill in small holes that might be lacking topping). Bake for 35-45 minutes, until top is golden and bubbling. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack before cutting into bars.
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It’s been a while since I told you how much I love the recipes published in Fine Cooking magazine. It’s by far, my favorite cooking magazine out there. I’ve had a subscription for several years now and I rarely make a recipe that doesn’t come out as good as I hoped for.

This recipe is an oldie but a goodie. I made it for a couple of our holiday parties, and then again upon request for a friend’s Chrismukkah  party. As a hostess, I love them because they can be made up to a month ahead of time and frozen. As a party-goer, I love Kahlua Truffle Triangles because they’re so rich and decadent, making them more like a truffle or candy than a bar cookie.

Want to spoil a loved one? Try these. (And hide a few in the freezer for yourself!)

Kahlua Truffle Triangles

Adapted from Fine Cooking No.82 p. 66

Makes approximately 5 dozen pieces

Ingredients for the Crust*:

  • 6-3/4 oz. (1-1/2 c.) all-purpose flour
  • 3 oz. (3/4 c.) confectioners’ sugar
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 6 oz. (12 Tbs.) cold, unsalted butter, cut into tablespoons, plus more to grease the pan
  • 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract

* Fine Cooking recommends measuring the ingredients for the crust by weight for best results. However, I included measurements as well, in case you don’t have a kitchen scale.

Ingredients for the Chocolatey Kahlua Goodness:

  • 1 lb. semisweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  • 3/4 c. whole or 2% milk
  • 8 Tbs. unsalted butter, cut into 6 pieces
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2/3 c. granulated sugar
  • 2-4 Tbs. Kahlua (I use closer to 4 Tbs.)

Instructions:

  1. Line the bottom of a 9×13 inch baking pan with aluminum foil, allowing the foil to hang over the edge by an inch or two. Lightly butter and set aside.
  2. With a rack positioned in the center of the oven, preheat oven to 350°F.
  3. Make the crust: Place flour, confectioners’ sugar and salt in a food processor and pulse to combine. Add butter and vanilla, pulsing until the ingredients are just a bunch of crumbles. Turn dough out into prepared pan. (Do not add water, no matter how much you think it’s too dry.) Spread and press along bottom of the pan (not sides!) into a smooth even layer. The crumbles will press down and come together into a proper shortbread crust. Bake 20-25 minutes, until pale golden. Do not overbake or you will have a hard crust. Transfer to a cooling rack.
  4. As crust is cooling, lower temperature to 325°F and make the chocolate Kahlua layer.
  5. Set a medium bowl over simmering water. Melt the chocolate, milk, and butter together, stirring and whisking until smooth. Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly.
  6. As the chocolate is cooling, combine eggs, sugar, and Kahlua in a stand mixer on medium-high speed until the color has lightened and mixture is slightly foamy. Reduce speed to low and slowly add in chocolate mixture, scraping down the sides as necessary. Beat for 30-60 seconds until completely combined.
  7. Pour the chocolate-Kahlua topping over crust in an even layer. Bake 25-30 minutes, until sides are slightly puffy and a toothpick inserted into the center is “wet and gooey but not liquid.” Allow to cool on a wire rack. (Center may sink a little bit – that’s ok. It doesn’t bother me, but if you’d like, while chocolate is still warm, push down on the elevated edges so that they sink to the same level as the center.)
  8. When completely cool, refrigerate until very cold, at least 12 hours or as much as 2 days.
  9. An hour or two before serving, remove bars from pan using the handy-dandy aluminum foil overhand. Peal away foil and place on a cutting board. Using a hot knife, slice bars into squares and then diagonally into triangles. Trust me, these are very rich so you want to cut them into triangles. Wipe knife clean, warming if necessary, in between each cut. If the triangles get too soft (as it did for me on this unusually warm spring day), refrigerate another 15 minutes before continue cutting.
Store in the fridge.
Make Ahead & Freeze: Bars can be make up to 1 month ahead and frozen in the baking pan, wrapped tightly in 2-3 layers of plastic wrap. Do not cut the triangles before freezing.
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