Sunday, May 22, 2011

Double Raspberry Streusel Bars

Double Raspberry Streusel Bars
As shared from the kitchen of Once Upon a Plate by Mari

Yields 24 2-inch Squares

2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon table salt
2 sticks (16 tablespoons) Butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes ~ room temperature
Plus 2 tablespoons butter, room temperature (Divided use)
1/4 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1/2 cup rolled oats (old fashioned type)
1/2 cups nuts (walnuts, pecans, or almonds), finely chopped
3/4 cup raspberry preserves or jam
3/4 cup fresh raspberries (may use frozen, thawed)
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Preparation:  Adjust oven rack to middle position. Preheat oven to 375* (F).  Line 13x9-inch baking pan with foil, or parchment paper (interior bottom and sides) allowing some overhang to ease the baked streusel out of the pan after baking and cooling.  If using foil, spray with baking spray.

If using a stand mixer ~ Use paddle attachment. Mix flour, granulated sugar and salt at low speed until combined (about 5 seconds or so.) One piece at a time, add butter to flour mixture while beating at low speed. Continue mixing on low speed until mixture resembles damp sand (approximately 1 to 1 1/2 minutes.)

If using food processor ~ With metal blade in place, process flour, granulated sugar until combined (about 5 seconds.) Scatter 16 tablespoons of butter pieces over flour mixture, pulse until mixture resembles damp sand (usually requires 20 to 25 one-second pulses.)

Measure 1 1/4 cups of the flour mixture into a medium bowl, set aside.  Place  remaining flour mixture in prepared pan, distribute evenly and tamp down firmly with a flat bottomed measuring cup, or your hands in order to form an even bottom crust.  Bake in preheated oven until edges begin to brown (about 14 to 18 minutes, depending upon your oven.)

Meanwhile, add brown sugar, oats and nuts to reserved flour mixture, toss with a fork or your fingers to combine. Add remaining 2 tablespoons butter to mixture and rub between your fingers until butter is completely incorporated. Press/pinch pieces to form hazelnut or small marble size clumps. Set aside.

Mix preserves/jam, raspberries and lemon juice in a small bowl,  with a fork mash some of the berries, leaving some texture so some berry pieces remain.

Spread the filling evenly over the hot crust. Sprinkle streusel topping evenly over filling (don't press streusel into the fruit.)  Place pan back into the oven and continue baking until topping is deep golden brown and filling is bubbling (about 22 to 25 minutes.)  Cool to room temperature on wire rack for 1 to 2 hours.  Remove from baking pan by gripping the parchment paper or foil overhangs. With a large sharp knife cut into squares and serve.  May be stored, air tight for up to 4 days... the bars will not be as crisp as when first baked, but will still be delicious!

Recipe adapted from Cooks Illustrated, September 2005 issue.

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