Tag Archives: bars

Peanut Butter Cup S’mores Blondies

16 Jan

Well, I’m not much for resolutions. In fact, the only resolution I’ve decided on thus far is to eat McDonald’s once a week. You might be surprised and disgusted to hear this, but I’ll explain my reasoning. First of all, I love McDonald’s. I’m unabashed about that. One time I went on a first date to McDonald’s and I was pumped. Secondly, I used to go to McDonald’s a TON a few years ago. I’d go a few times a week, usually to consume a hot fudge sundae with peanuts (only ONE DOLLAR, PEOPLE) or a cheeseburger and french fries (their french fries really are a league of their own) or a delicious breakfast sandy (“sandy” = cute word for sandwich). Looking back, I realized those were the good ol’ days.

I sincerely hope to get some impassioned responses to my one and only resolution. (Adrianne, you are disgusting or You are going to die a young death feeding your body that crap or Me tooooo, McDonald’s is AMAZE!!)

I realize many of you may feel McDonald’s is extremely unhealthy. So here’s a really healthy dessert option to balance out life. (Not! I FREAKING LOVE DELICIOUS FOOD.)

Peanut Butter Cup S'mores Blondies

I first had a variation of these PB cup s’mores bars over Thanksgiving, thanks to a sweet coworker. They are seriously addictive and the most pleasant combination of flavors in your mouth. When I started searching for a recipe to base these off of, though, the only recipes I found called for 16 PB cups. 16!! I only had 3 in my cupboard, so I made do with my own little recipe.

The result? Better than OK. Much better. Probably what makes these so great is the browned butter and brown sugar combo. The blondie base is truly delicious, and it makes the bars have a buttery, almost-caramel flavor. To recap: butter caramel flavor + peanut butter cups + marshmallow + milk chocolate + graham cracker = heaven.  Enjoy these addictive little treats.

Peanut Butter Cup S'mores Blondies

Stir up your blondie dough.

Peanut Butter Cup S'mores Blondies

Press 2/3 of the dough into pan and cover with peanut butter cups and milk chocolate chips.

Peanut Butter Cup S'mores Blondies

Add your marshmallow layer, then top with remaining 1/3 blondie dough. (This will not be an exact science.)

Peanut Butter Cup S'mores Blondies

Bake for 15 minutes, then top with graham cracker crumbles and continue baking another 5-7 minutes. Cool until set, then dig in!

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Chocolate Caramel Shortbread Bars

19 Jul

When asked what my favorite animal was, I always used to say a cheetah. They have bright, spotted coats of fur and can run as fast as cars can drive. Also, have you ever seen pictures of a baby cheetah cub? Cutest. Thing. Ever. I guess I imagined cheetahs to be like big house cats—just more adept at leaping and hunting.

This time next month I will be in South Africa. That’s right everybody, SOUTH AFRICA. It’s a little bit crazy, considering the only time I left the United States was to go to Jamaica, and at that time I was living in Florida (so it wasn’t really that far away). One-way travel to our first destination is a mere staggering 26 hours.

I’m excited to go (understatement of the year). Things I will be doing include going on a wildlife safari, visiting Cape Town, touching the Indian Ocean, and tasting some new-to-me African dishes. My mind is boggled. It is actually a possibility that I might see a real cheetah. My life might be complete after that.

In retrospect, my life might have been complete after making and eating these chocolate caramel shortbread bars. I’ve always had a thing for caramel, and what better way to eat caramel than sandwiched between a layer of smooth chocolate and buttery shortbread?

Yes, the bars happen to contain 4 whole sticks of butter. Yes, the recipe makes a large 9 x 13-sized batch. Yes, I ate the majority of these by myself in under a week’s time. Any more questions?

Start by making your shortbread. At first it will be very crumbly. Keep mixing.

Keep mixing.

Before you know it, the dough will come together and feel more like cookie dough.

Press the dough into a parchment-lined cake pan. Even out the dough with your fingers or the bottom of a flat glass, then bake it.

To make the caramel, melt the butter with the sugar, corn syrup, and sweetened condensed milk. Stir constantly!

Keep stirring constantly even once it starts to boil.

Keep stirring constantly as it starts to thicken.

Keep stirring constantly until it turns a light caramel color. Remove from heat.

Spread the caramel over your shortbread, then put the pan in the refrigerator until you’ve made your chocolate.

Combine your butter, corn syrup, and chocolate.

Heat over simmering water just until melted.

Spread chocolate over caramel and shortbread layers.

Refrigerate until firmed up. Sprinkle with coarse sea salt.

Cut into bars and serve. Refrigerate leftovers for up to a week or freeze indefinitely. (more…)