Five years ago, I was an unhappy cog in the machine that is Citigroup. Five years ago, I decided to stop being a cog and be happy and do things that make me happy and hopefully make me money. Five years ago I discovered Food & Wine magazine and, in the very first issue I bought, I discovered Raspberry Shortbread Bars. They are exactly what they sound like: a chewy, sweet and delicate cookie with a layer of raspberry jam in the middle.
When I first saw this recipe, I was intimidated and wondered how could I possibly make something that looks that good!! I read the recipe over and over again on the way to work and decided to seize the moment and move beyond my chocolate chip cookies repertoire. The results? I realized that the recipe is actually pretty simple since there is no rolling out of dough. I also realized that cooking makes me very happy. The first batch turned out so well, I made another and brought them into work and then to friends as I saw them throughout the week.
They were such a hit with one friend in particular that, years later while suffering from gestational diabetes, she asked if I would bring a fresh batch of Raspberry Shortbread Bars to the hospital after she gave birth. She wanted her first sugary treat to be these bars. Have I sold you yet? If you're in a baking rut and are looking for a recipe to brighten your day without driving you nuts, I highly recommend these. Enjoy!
Raspberry Shortbread Bars
Barely adapted after all these years from Food & Wine magazine
(Instead of rolling out the dough, use a large box grater. It's much easier and it adds a wonderful lightness to the bars.)
What You'll Need:
2 cups White Whole Wheat Flour
1 tsp Baking Powder
1/2 tsp salt
2 sticks Butter at room temperature
1 cup Sugar
1 cup Sugar
2 large Egg Yolks
1 tsp Vanilla Extract
1 cup Raspberry Jam (the best you have)
Mix the dry ingredients together in a bowl and set aside.
In a mixer with a paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugar together on medium high until it's light and fluffy. Turn down the speed to low medium and beat in the egg yolks one at a time. Add the vanilla. Scrape down the sides. Turn down the speed to low and slowly add the flour. Once it's incorporated, turn out the dough and split it in two. Wrap up each piece in saran wrap and form into a ball. Refrigerate for a couple hours until hard.
Preheat the oven to 350 when you're ready to bake.
In a square brownie tin, fold in a large piece of parchment. No need to measure and cut it. You should be able to press the parchment down and then fold it at the corners so it fits.
With a large grater, grate one of the dough balls evenly over the brownie pan. gently spread the dough out to the corners. Then dollop the jam evenly on top of the dough and spread it out with an icing spatula. Grate the other dough ball evenly overtop the jam. Pop in the oven and cook until it's golden brown. Around 30-40 minutes.
Approximate Cost:Groceries: $8
Cost per Meal: Expect 25 bars.