Monday, January 25, 2016

Pistachio Bars

These bars. They are filled with so many interesting flavors and textures, I wondered after trying one if the name "pistachio bars" was a bit of a misnomer. In addition to pistachios, they are studded with both cranberries and cherries AND coconut.

And all of that sits suspended in a gooey syrup atop a lovely shortbread crust. But I understand that you can't be naming things "pistachio, cranberry, cherry and coconut syrupy goodness shortbread bars." So pistachio bars will have to do.

Oh, and the white chocolate! They are drizzled with white chocolate. Now the title would be even longer...

Anyway, these bars received rave reviews at home and at a party. They are interesting, complex, different, and delicious. Make them for yourself; I'm sure you'll agree.

Get more great ideas at Inspiration Monday, Mix it Up, Show and Share, Tasty Tuesday, Try a new Recipe, Create Link Inspire, Fabulous.

Pistachio Bars

1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. flour
1 cup plus 2 Tbsp. brown sugar
5 Tbsp. cold butter, cut into chunks
1 egg
2 Tbsp. maple syrup
3/4 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. almond extract
1/2 tsp. salt
1 cup pistachios, toasted and chopped
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup dried cherries, chopped
3/4 cup sweetened shredded coconut
2 ounces white chocolate, chopped

Line an 8-inch square baking pan with foil, allowing excess foil to hang over pan edges. Spray foil with nonstick cooking spray.

In a food processor, process 1 cup flour and 2 tablespoons sugar until combined. Add butter and pulse until only pea-sized pieces remain. Press mixture into prepared pan and bake at 375 until light golden, about 15 minutes. Cool completely. (If you don't have a food processor, whisk together the flour and sugar, then cut in the butter using two forks, a pastry blender or your fingers until only pea sized pieces remain.)

Whisk egg, syrup, vanilla and almond extracts, salt, remaining flour, and remaining sugar in large bowl. Fold in pistachios, cranberries, cherries, and coconut, then spread mixture evenly over cooled crust. Bake until topping is golden and begins to pull away from sides of pan, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool completely.

Using foil overhang, lift cookies out of pan. Cut into 2½-inch squares and cut each square diagonally into 2 triangles. Microwave white chocolate in small bowl, stirring occasionally, until melted, 30 to 60 seconds; drizzle over the bars. Place on wire rack until chocolate sets, about 30 minutes.

Store in air tight containers for up to a week. Makes 18 bars.

Recipe Source: The Church Cook

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