These are my favorite bars in the world. To make. To eat. To share. Big statement, but it's true. They are perfect anytime of year, but felt especially perfect for the Fourth of July. And I know we say this a lot, but this recipe is easy. It relies two delicious store-bought items: raspberry jam and granola.
a little holiday gathering, and have made them so many times since. Every time I finish off a batch, I just want to make more. They're a Barefoot Contessa special, and since the full recipe is now online, I just had to share it with you and add a few quick tips.
Raspberry Crumble Bars
from The Barefoot Contessa: Foolproof, page 210
Yield: 16 square bars (or less, if you like larger bars)
1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
3/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 1/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
10 to 12 ounces of good raspberry jam
2/3 cup good granola without dried fruit
1/4 cup sliced almonds
Confectioners' sugar, for dusting
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Mix the butter and sugar in a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment until just combined. With the mixer on low, add the vanilla.
In a medium mixing bowl, sift or whisk together the flour and salt and with the mixer on low, slowly add to the butter mixture until it comes together and nearly forms a ball.
Turn out dough to a board and with your fingers, gently press 2/3 of the dough evenly into the bottom of a 9 inch square baking pan. It should be about 1/4 inch thick up the sides of the pan.
Spread the jam over the dough, leaving a 1/4 inch border.
With your fingers, mix the remaining dough with the granola into a crumble and break it up evenly over the jam (my favorite part!), covering most of the surfaces. Sprinkle the crumble with the almonds and bake the bars for 45 minutes or until the top is lightly browned.
Cool completely and cut into squares. Dust lightly with confectioners' sugar before serving.
+ my favorite jarred jam is Bonne Maman.
+ my favorite basic store-bought granola is Vons' Open Nature naturally-flavored granola with honey and nuts. It's light - in flavor and color - and compliments these bars beautifully.
+ about baking: mind the gap. Be sure to leave a tiny border between the jam and the pan. If you spread the jam all the way to the sides of the pan, you will never get the bars out. Or you will sweat trying. Promise.