Brownies- plain and simple

These brownies could be called the brownies that almost weren’t. I went on a hunt for unsweetened baking chocolate stopping at two different stores and I found none. Once home I started plotting how I could make the brownies with extra butter and maybe cocoa powder instead. Then I remembered I HAD unsweetened chocolate in my baking cupboard. Win.

Simple fudgy brownies

I have seen this exact recipe on several blogs and even one cookbook. It is clearly tested time and time again. I found it incredibly simple and perfect. The only issue I had (if you can call it that) is that I baked it for the recommended amount of time plus 5 minutes and they were still super fudgy. I would leave them in 5 minutes longer next time although they were incredibly tasty a bit under baked.

Simple fudgy brownies

This will be my go to brownie recipe from here on out. I made a different recipe last night and certainly prefer this one. No worries- we ate the batch from last night so no brownies are homeless. Unsweetened chocolate is on my shopping list so my pantry will be stocked the next time I need to make these. I highly recommend you do the same.

Simple fudgy brownies

Brownies (makes 1 8×8 pan)

3 ounces unsweetened chocolate, roughly chopped
1/2 cup unsalted butter, plus extra for pan
1 1/3 cups granulated sugar
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon  vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup all-purpose flour

Heat oven to 350°F. Line an 8×8-inch square baking pan with parchment. Butter the parchment or spray it with a nonstick cooking spray. Alternatively just butter and flour the pan. In a medium heatproof bowl over gently simmering water, melt chocolate and butter together until mostly melted. Off the heat stir until smooth and finished melting. Whisk in sugar, then eggs, one at a time, then vanilla and salt. Stir in flour with a spatula and scrape batter into prepared pan, spread until even. Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out batter-free. Cool, cut, eat. Share if you must.

Simple fudgy brownies

 

Apple crumb bread

This past week we have gone from scorching hot (by Oregon standards) to sweaters and jeans. The first cool-ish day we had I made treats to take to my sister and brother in law. They finished their first triathalon and I promised them muffins. The next cool-ish day that I had a spare moment I whipped up this bread. As you might recall I posted this recipe in my favorites last week. I had some apples on the counter I intended to feed to Little but never got around to it. They were getting questionable so I happily chopped them up and put them in this simple recipe.

Between the cooler weather and my house smelling almost like Christmas I started to get that summer-is-almost-over panic. What? That doesn’t happen to you? It is this sinking feeling in my stomach and I just know we are in for rain, tasteless middle of winter tomatoes, and one too many meal of winter squash for the lack of other tasty veggies to eat. It feels like doomsday.

Apple crumb bread

So to remedy that feeling for dinner yesterday I had fresh locally grown sliced peaches smothered in full fat yogurt and granola.

Embrace summer friends. It is almost over. And when it is make this bread. But not before because it might send you in to a similar panic.

Apple Crumb Bread (makes 1 loaf)

Bread:
1/2  cup butter, softened
1/2  cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/3 cup buttermilk
2  teaspoons baking powder
2  eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2  cups all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 tsp nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups peeled apples, diced

Streusel:
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
3  tablespoons flour
2  tablespoons butter, softened
1/3  cup walnuts chopped

Apple crumb bread

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease the bottom and sides of a 9x5x3 inch loaf pan. If using a glass loaf pan bake 25 degrees lower. In a large bowl beat the butter and sugars together until combined. Add the buttermilk and baking powder; and beat until combined. Add eggs and vanilla; and beat until combined. Add flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt; beat until combined.

Toss the apples in a bit of flour before adding to the batter. By hand stir in the nuts and apples. Spoon batter into prepared pan and spread evenly. Prepare the streusel topping by mixing in a small bowl the brown sugar, cinnamon and flour. Using a pastry blender or fork cut in the butter until it resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in walnuts or pecans. Sprinkle streusel over the batter. Bake for 60-70 minutes or until a wooden toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool bread in pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove from pan and cool completely.

Apple crumb bread

Zucchini Bread

How do you know someone doesn’t have any friends?

They are buying zucchini in August.

Easy zucchini bread

Oddly enough our zucchini isn’t completely out of control this year. Or at least we have been staying on top of it. Maybe we are just eating more veggies. You know, like we all should be doing. We have only found two or three zucchini that grew to baseball bat size. I like baseball bat sized zucchini. They mean one thing and one thing only- zucchini bread.

Nathan has always been the zucchini bread master in our house but this week I found myself staring a very tattered recipe trying to decipher his notes. I did pretty well if I do say so myself. One loaf was gifted and the other inhaled by my household in less than 24 hours.

Easy zucchini bread

Years ago we entered a loaf of this bread that Nathan made in the local county fair. It won a blue ribbon. By which I mean it took first place (in case there was any doubt). I was stupid proud. That was the year we also won a blue ribbon for our blueberry muffins. And second place for my carrot cake.

Seeing as the muffins and bread already have blue ribbons I am shooting for a first place for my carrot cake this year. Entries are due on Sunday. Yes the same carrot cake I made (disastrously) into cupcakes not too long ago. I think I am also going to enter my rosemary pound cake and maybe, just maybe, lemon dream bars. If I get around the bars brace yourself for the most addictive lemon bar recipe in existence. Also it is my daddy’s favorite and I love making them for him.

Easy zucchini bread

Zucchini Bread (makes 2 loaves)

So there is a secret to this recipe. Or so Nathan believes. The key is to grate the zucchini and let it drain. Grate it, put it in a colander, and let it dry out over night in the fridge if you have the time. If you are pressed for time press it in the colander to get most of the moisture out. Wrap it in a cheese cloth and squeeze all the moisture out if you really want to be thorough. We are looking for DRY zucchini.

3 cups all-purpose flour1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda3 teaspoons ground cinnamon1/4 teaspoon baking powder
3 eggs
2 cups white sugar
3 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 cup vegetable oil
3 cups grated zucchini
1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)

Easy zucchini bread

Preheat oven to 350 F. Sift together flour, salt, soda, cinnamon, baking powder. In another bowl beat eggs. Add and mix well sugar, vanilla, and oil. Add zucchini to egg mixture. Add dry ingredients, mixing well. Stir in nuts if desired. Pour into 2 buttered and floured loaf pans (line with parchment if you are like me and paranoid of the loaves sticking). Bake for 1 hour or until a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Easy zucchini bread

Cherry Pie

Experts say that you must expose a baby to a new food ten + times to get them to develop a taste for whatever it is that you are feeding them. Little didn’t care for blueberries much when he first tried them. After repeatedly offering them to him they are now one of his favorite foods. He is taking his time adjusting to green beans though. I just keep putting food on his tray and he eats it or doesn’t. Eventually he will eat it.

Cherry Pie

I feel like I am this way too. Having grown up in Spain I was never really exposed to blueberries and therefore, as an adult, haven’t cared for them until recently. Same with anything with cooked cherries. What I have discovered of late is that I don’t like artificial blueberry and cherry flavors. Fresh blueberries or home-frozen that I put in baked goods are a different taste category than a Costco blueberry muffin. Fresh cherries have always been a favorite of mine but cherry pie or bars – yuck! Nathan, however, loves cherry pie so each year I go to a local farm and buy pie cherries to freeze. Every time I make a pie I take a tiny slice mostly because I love pie crust. Yesterday when I made this pie and had a slice I feel like I finally hit my tenth taste and loved it.

Pie cherries are almost done for the season here in my area. I highly recommend making this before they are gone till next year. Or at least run out, get some cherries, freeze them and make this in the dead of winter. Totally worth it. Even if it did take me years to decide it was delicious.

Cherry Pie

Pate Brisee (Makes enough for one double or two single-crust 9 inch pies)
I posted this recipe previously but here it is again.

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 sticks (1 cup) unsalted butter, cold, cut into small
1/4 cup ice water, plus more if needed

Dump flour and salt into the food processor; pulse to combine. Add butter, and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs about 10 pulses 1-2 seconds each. (To mix by hand, combine dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl, then cut in butter with a pastry blender.)

Turn machine on add ice water through feed tube in a slow, steady stream, just until dough holds together without being wet or sticky. Test by squeezing a small amount of dough together; if it is still too crumbly, add a bit more water, 1 tablespoon at a time. Turn out dough onto a clean work surface. Divide in half, and place each half on a piece of plastic wrap. Shape into flattened disks. Wrap in plastic, and refrigerate at least 1 hour or overnight. The dough can be frozen for up to 1 month; thaw overnight in the refrigerator before using.

Cherry Pie

Cherry Pie

1 recipe Pate Brisee
5 cups pie cherries (sour)
1 1/4 cups sugar
4 tbs cornstarch
2 tbs butter
1 egg lightly beaten for egg wash.
Turbinado sugar for sprinkling

Cherry Pie

Preheat oven to 425 F. Combine cherries, sugar, and cornstarch in a bowl. Set aside. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out half the dough to 1/8-inch-thick circle, about 13 inches in diameter. Drape dough over a deep dish 9-inch pie pan, and transfer to refrigerator to chill. Roll out the remaining dough to the same size and thickness. Pour the cherry mixture into the chilled pie crust. Dot with butter. Brush the rim of the crust with the egg wash, place the other piece of dough on top, trim to 1/2 inch over edge of pan, and crimp the edges with a fork or your fingers. Cut vent holes. Lightly brush the top and sides with egg wash. Sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Transfer to the oven, placing a cookie sheet on the rack under the pie to catch any bubble over. Bake for 30 minutes then reduce temperature to 350 F. Bake for 25-30 minutes more until bubbly and brown. Allow to cool for at least an hour before serving.

Cherry Pie

 

 

Rosemary Shortbread

I have been uninspired to cook lately. It is getting incredibly hot and it is supposed to be over 95 F tomorrow. Who wants to turn on the oven when it is hot hot hot outside? Not me.

Rosemary Shortbread

I threw these together last night, waiting to turn on the oven till after 9 pm so as to not warm up the house. I want to make a big cake for my anniversary on Monday but I don’t see that happening. I want to eat watermelon, drink a good beer, and stay as cool as humanly possible. Oh, and play with Little. He is getting so big so fast and it is making me sad.

But I love rosemary in sweets. Not too sweet, hint of saltiness, deep earthy rosemary. Yum. Remember the rosemary pound cake I made a couple of months ago? These shortbread cookies are very similar. I have had rosemary sitting on the counter for a week begging to be made into shortbread. Also they only require turning the oven up to 300 F and bake rather quickly.

Rosemary Shortbread

If you live in the Pacific Northwest hurry and make these before it gets too hot!

Rosemary Shortbread (makes about 20 cookies)

2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
1 1/2 sticks (3/4 cup) unsalted butter, softened
2 tablespoons mild honey
1/2 cup confectioners sugar
1 tablespoon granulated sugar

Rosemary Shortbread

Preheat oven to 300°F. Whisk together flour, salt, baking powder, and rosemary in a bowl. Mix together butter, honey, and confectioners sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer at low speed, then add flour mixture and mix until dough resembles coarse meal with some small (roughly pea-size) butter lumps. Gather on the counter and kneed a couple of times to combine. Roll into a log, wrap in plastic wrap and put in the fridge. Refrigerate till firm- about an hour and half.

Remove from the fridge and cut into 1/4 inch rounds. Place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Bake for 20-25 minutes till golden brown.

Rosemary Shortbread

(Ps. The blog might be kinda slow next week as I will spend the better part of next Saturday and Sunday in the kitchen baking for the county fair! I promise to share the recipes I enter as well as what, if anything, I win.)

Rhubarb Crisp

This was a busy weekend and I have a busy start to the week too. House guests, dinners, playdates.  Lots of cooking and baking going on these past few days. Preserving the garden bounty, feeding throngs of people around my too small dinner table, trying to use up the last bit of frozen/canned food from last summer. All this commotion  makes me happy. I love having a house full of friends and family.

So, since I am short on time, I leave you with this recipe. One I was not sold on when I made it nor when it came out of the oven, but I have nonetheless decided to share because of how AMAZING it was once it was in the fridge for a day. Plus, it helped me use up the rhubarb one of Nathan’s coworkers had gifted us.

rhubarb crisp

Delish. Just don’t judge it on how it tastes when it first comes out of the oven.

Rhubarb Crisp

3 cups chopped rhubarb
1 cup white sugar
3/4 cup rolled oats
1 teaspoon all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup butter, softened

rhubarb crisp

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F  and lightly grease a 2 quart baking dish. In a large bowl, combine rhubarb, sugar, oats, 1 teaspoon flour, cinnamon and brown sugar. Stir until well combined and pour into prepared baking dish. In small bowl, stir together 3/4 cup flour, baking soda and salt. Blend in butter until all flour is incorporated. Sprinkle over rhubarb mixture. Bake 30 minutes, or until rhubarb is tender. Serve with whipped cream.

rhubarb crisp

Carrot Cake Cupcakes

Cooking is my hobby. I am fairly competent in the kitchen, or at least I think so. However, when it came time to make these cupcakes, it was amature hour. My mind was clearly elsewhere. Where you ask? I have no idea. This was a disaster. It felt like the three stooges moved in. Despite my attempts to sabotage my own cupcakes, they turned out. Proof even a bad cook can make a good recipe. Think I am exaggerating? The following happened yesterday as I tried to make these:

1. The tiny carrots I had picked from my garden were in water. Said water was spilled all over my cookbook, counter and floor. Water was later found in the cupboards and drawers.

2. I tried to grate the aforementioned tiny carrots on my regular grater. I am sure if I had continued that course of action I would still be grating carrots. In the interest of time I did something I have never done before- I pulled out my Cuisinart and fitted it with the shredding disc. The tiny carrots didn’t want to grate. Well they did, but just not all the way.  I then had to pick  large carrot pieces out of the shredded carrot. Maddening.

Carrot cake cupcakes

3. I skipped a step in adding the ingredients. Who does this?!? After mixing the oil and sugar, I proceeded to add the flour mixture completely forgetting the eggs. Once all the flour was in the bowl I saw the egg carton. I debating trying to remove the flour but opted instead to turn on the mixer and quickly add all the eggs. To make up for the lumpy mess I scrapped down the bowl then turned the mixer on medium high and beat the living daylights out of it.

4. I forgot to preheat oven. Not the end of the world and, in my case, a blessing because when I went to turn the oven on I remembered to remove the pizza stones from last nights dinner. I was feeling smug. After scooping the batter into the muffin pans I popped them in the oven and started in on dishes. About 5 minutes later my oven beeped at me. It was to early for the timer so I stared blankly at the oven trying to figure out why it beeped. Oh. It was finally up to temp. Nearly 7 minutes into the baking time. Awesome.

5. They burnt. But out of the three pans only four cupcakes burnt. And it was only the bottom. What? There was no rhyme or reason to the ones that burnt too. My oven is always very very even.

6. I screwed up the frosting. I didn’t take time to read the recipe fully and after creaming the cream cheese, vanilla and powdered sugar I just dumped in the whipping cream. Uh… You are supposed to beat it separately and fold it in. So again, I turned the mixer on medium high and prayed. The frosting is actually quite good although a bit runny. I refrigerated the cupcakes overnight and they were delicious the next morning. I was looking for a new cream cheese frosting what I can pipe so this clearly wasn’t it.

But as you can see they are beautiful. Moist. Carroty. Here are the recipes as they were written- however you can make the above modifications and they will still turn out. I would recommend skipping the part where you spill water all over your kitchen.

Carrot cake cupcakes

Carrot Cake Cupcakes (makes 26 give or take)

2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
4 large eggs
2 cups flour
2 tsp baking soda
2 tsp baking powder
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
3 cups grated carrots
1 cup nuts (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 F. Combine oil and sugar in a large mixing bowl. Beat in one egg at a time mixing well after each addition. Combine flour, soda, powder, cinnamon, and salt in a separate bowl Add to egg mixture and mix well. Add carrots and nuts and stir till combined. Pour into lined cupcake pan. Fill to 1/2 full. Alternatively pour in to a greased and floured 9×13 pan. Bake for 28-30 minutes for cupcakes, 45 minutes for a cake.

Carrot cake cupcakes

Whipped Cream Cheese Frosting

16oz cream cheese, room temperature
1 1/2 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup heavy cream, cold

Beat the cheese, sugar and vanilla until smooth and fluffy. In a separate bowl, beat the heavy cream to nearly stiff peaks, then add the whipped cream into the cheese mixture and quickly and briefly beat to combine. Do not over beat.

Ps. Alternatively use this cream cheese frosting which is pipe-able. Also for some reason I feel the need to tell you that this carrot cake recipe has in fact won a ribbon at my local county fair and I will be entering it again this year. I have made it many times. I have no idea why I was such a screw up this time. In fact, the day went so poorly I completely abandoned all other cooking projects for the day. Some days are meant for cooking, others for beer. Yesterday was the latter.

Carrot cake cupcakes

Vanilla Bean Latte Cupcakes

I love birthdays. We have already discussed birthdays on this little blog in fact (here!). Birthdays mean presents, time with friends, happiness, candles, milestones, and of course cake.

You don’t even have to give me permission to make you a cake, or at least something sweet, for your birthday. I will just do it. As was the case with my friend Becky’s birthday yesterday. I knew her birthday was coming up and pondered for a week what to make for her. This girl loves coffee. A lot. I have been dying to make peach cupcakes for a while ever since I pinned a recipe but opted instead to scour the internet for the perfect vanilla latte cupcakes. Do you know how many latte cupcakes are out there!?! Somehow I stumbled upon one recipe that called for filling the cupcakes. Um. Yes please. Although it meant more steps I couldn’t pass up the idea.

Unfortunately my hands were full with Little yesterday so I couldn’t personally deliver them. Becky’s husband, Halsey, was my partner in crime and came to pick them up at my house mid afternoon so they would be waiting at home for her when she returned from work. Yey for birthday cupcakes AND surprises!

Happy happy birthday Becky. I hope you enjoyed them.

Vanilla bean latte cupcakes

Vanilla Bean Latte Cupcakes (makes 12)

1/2 vanilla bean
3/4 cup milk
6 Tbs unsalted butter
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
Pinch of salt
1 1/4 tsp baking powder

Preheat the oven to 350° F and line a muffin tin with cupcake liners. Scrape the vanilla bean and add with the pod and milk in a small pot. Heat the mixture and let it simmer for a few a minutes. Allow the vanilla to steep in the milk as it cools. Cream the butter and sugar in an electric mixer until light and fluffy. Add the egg and vanilla to the butter mixture and mix until combined. Sift together the dry ingredients. Remove the pod from the milk mixture. (You can wash and dry the pod for some other use.) Alternate adding the milk mixture and dry ingredients to the egg mixture. Mix each addition until combined. Fill the cupcake liners to half way. Bake at 350 °F for 15-18 minutes or until a skewer comes out clean.

Vanilla bean latte cupcakes

For the espresso filling:
1 cup heavy cream
2 yolks
3 Tbs sugar
1 1/2 tsp instant espresso

Heat half the cream and 2 Tbs of sugar and the espresso in a small pot until just boiling. Whisk together the yolks and remaining sugar. Add half the hot cream mix to the egg mixture while whisking. Return the egg mixture to the pot with the remaining cream and and bring it to a boil while continually whisking. Allow it to boil for several minutes while it thickens. Strain the mixture and let it cool in another bowl. Whip the remaining cream to medium peaks and fold it into the cooked cream.

For the vanilla espresso frosting:
3/4 cup unsalted butter
1 cup confectioners sugar
1 tsp espresso powder
1 tsp vanilla extract

Cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Dissolve the espresso powder in a tablespoon or two of water and add it to mixture along with the vanilla extract. Mix until combined.

Assembly:
Using a small paring knife, cut out the center of each cupcake at about a 45 degree angle so that you have cut out a cone shape with the wide part being the top of the cupcake. Fill each cupcake with a spoonful of the espresso cream. Now cut off the narrow part of the cupcake cone and replace the circular top of the cupcake. Frost each cupcake with a star shaped tip or any tip of your liking.

Vanilla bean latte trifles- made with leftovers from making the cupcakes

Notes- This frosting is out of this world good. I am going to remake it and use it to fill chocolate macaroons. Also this is an amazing vanilla cake recipe. These cupcakes are best after being refrigerated for a couple of hours. When you are finished coring, filling, and frosting the cupcakes you might find yourself with leftover cake bits, filling and frosting. Don’t toss them! Make tiny trifles by layering the leftovers in shot glasses and save for a late night treat for you and someone special.

Vanilla bean latte trifles- made with leftovers from making the cupcakes

Fruit Crumble Bars – Revisited

Last week I posted this wonderful cherry crumble bar recipe. These bars got better by the day but overall seemed to be missing something. Everyone who tasted them gave them rave reviews so I figured we were just too picky, spoiled, or sophisticated.

Again, I found myself with fruit in fridge looking a little worse for the wear. I saved some raspberries after making jam this week and there were some blueberries lurking in the back of the fridge from the last time I visited my mom’s house (she has a huge blueberry patch in her backyard). I wanted to remake the bars as a “real food.” Real food to me means omitting all refined ingredients. I substitute whole wheat flour for the all purpose flour and sucanat for the sugar. What is sucanat? You can check the wikipedia entry but basically it is an unrefined, whole cane sugar. It is still sugar and, contrary to what this blog may suggest, I do try to limit how much sugar we have in our diets but when I cook for just us,I use sucanat.

fruit crumble bars

These bars are infinitely better. I have considered deleting the original cherry bars but figured they have their place. I just much prefer these amendments. Here is the updated recipe:

Fruit Crumble Bars

1 cup sucanat
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup cold unsalted butter (2 sticks or 8 ounces)
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 cups fresh fruit (I used 2 cups of blueberries and 2 cups of raspberries)
1/2 cup sucanat
4 teaspoons cornstarch

Fruit crumble bars

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease a 9×13 inch (or two 8×8) pan and line with parchment.  In a medium bowl, stir together 1 cup sucanat, 3 cups flour, salt, and baking powder. Use a fork or pastry cutter to blend in the butter and egg. Dough will be crumbly. Pat half of dough into the prepared pan (if using two pans put 1/4 of the dough in each pan).  In another bowl, stir together the sugar and cornstarch . Gently mix in the fruit. If doing two pans mix fruit with 2 tsp cornstarch and 1/4 cup sucanat each. Sprinkle the fruit mixture evenly over the crust (or crusts). Crumble remaining dough over the fruit layer. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until top is slightly brown.

Fruit crumble bars- easy and use whatever fruit you have on hand!

Cherry crumble bars

Confessions:

I drink too much coffee.

Often clothes will sit in my dryer for three to four days before being folded and sitting in the basket for another week. Thankfully Little has too many clothes.

I am addicted to my iPhone (not good).

Cake is my kryptonite. I cannot resist it.

Yard work and vacuuming are my least favorite chores. Hence why my yard is a mess.

There are clothes in my closet that still have the tags on them and have never been worn (anyone else do this!?!). In my defense they are work type clothes and a button down dress shirt isn’t really appropriate for a day at home with a messy baby.

Unitaskers have no place in my kitchen. Unless it is a cherry pitter. Which somehow I decided I needed and bought this week.

Sometimes fruit and veggies wallow in my fridge till they go bad. This makes me sad.

pitted cherries

I had way too many cherries,  had already eaten more than one person should, and I had my brand new super cool cherry pitter to use. So in an effort to avoid feeling sad I came up with this recipe.

Cutting in the butter

I actually knew what I wanted to make but couldn’t find a recipe to save my life. I found lots of cookie bar type recipes that called for cherry pie filling (YUCK!) and the ones I found that called for fresh cherries just weren’t right. So I pieced this together and it was perfect.

Cherry Crumble Bars (makes 24 or more depending on how you slice them)

1 cup white sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
3 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup cold unsalted butter (2 sticks or 8 ounces)
1 egg
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 cups fresh pitted cherries
1/2 cup white sugar
4 teaspoons cornstarch

Cherry crumble bars
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C). Grease a 9×13 inch pan.  In a medium bowl, stir together 1 cup sugar, 3 cups flour, salt, and baking powder. Use a fork or pastry cutter to blend in the butter and egg. Dough will be crumbly. Pat half of dough into the prepared pan.  In another bowl, stir together the sugar and cornstarch . Gently mix in the cherries. Sprinkle the cherry mixture evenly over the crust. Crumble remaining dough over the fruit layer. Bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes, or until top is slightly brown.

Cherry crumble bars

Ps. Substitute strawberries, raspberries, blueberries and lemon zest, cranberries and orange zest, or peaches for the cherries. This recipe is very flexible. Also, these cookies taste best after a night in the fridge. If you can resist them that long.

Cherry crumble bars

PPS. Remember how I mentioned I was officially (sorta) in business. Check these out- wrapped and tagged! Pro looking right? So much fun to deliver these little yummy samples to people yesterday!

Cherry crumble bars samples