Company is always an excuse to bake, even when it's not your own company. I love to feed others with my baking creations, try out and perfect recipes while they enjoy. Yesterday's recipe was a one I had done a couple weeks ago - raspberry jam bars but I mixed it up with some blackberry perserves instead.
Originally, I planned to double the crust to make them even more irresistable but I had only enough brown sugar for one recipes worth. The idea didn't occur to put it in a smaller pan to make the crust thicker until after it was well into baking.
When I got home from work, the pan was already half gone; success! I had my little share of bars as well when I got home. The buttery crust and crumble top were sandwiched between the not-too-sweet deep violet blackberry perserve creating the most wonderful slighty savory/sweet treat. Anything with crumbles has a special place in my heart; I hear an apple pie calling my name in the near future with homemade buttery crust, piled sky-high orchird apples, and mountain top crumbs.
Oatmeal Blackberry Jam Bars
adapted from Real Simple Magazine
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking soda
3/4 cup unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 1/2 cups quick-cooking oats
1 1/2 cups blackberry preserves (or your choice jam/preserves)
Heat oven to 350 degrees. Place flour, sugar, salt, and baking soda and butter into a large bowl and combine with hands until a crumbly dough forms. Toss in oats lightly.
Press 2/3 of dough firmly into 9X13 greased baking pan. Spread jam evenly over crust. Sprinkle remaining dough over jam, gently pressing down. Bake until golden brown, let cool 2 hours. Cut into 24 bars (yea right!). Store in airtight container.
Original Yield - 2 dozen bars (or however many you'd like).
In other news, everytime I go to a supermarket, convenience store, ok- pretty much any store, I see holiday baking magazines calling my name from the rack. Praline and cream cake calls from the cover just begging to be bought; their wishes are answered and I, in turn, become more broke. I can't go to any of these places without leaving with one of these oh-so-special-limited-edition food porn magazines. For the $8.00 dollars I paid, Paula Dean should come to my house and show me how to make the recipes.
Alas, Family beware - get in your extra treadmill miles and stair stepping classes now; your probably doomed.