In my ongoing quest to find tasty, kid-friendly food appropriate for the whole family, this week I chose a kid-friendly dessert bar. I found the recipe in “One Bowl Baking: Simple, From Scratch Recipes for Delicious Desserts," by Yvonne Ruperti (Running Press; $22.)
Peanut Butter and Jam Bars
(Makes 16, 2-inch bars)
For the crust:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
- 16 tablespoons softened unsalted butter, plus more for greasing the pan
- 1/3 cup chunky peanut butter
For the filling:
- 1 cup chunky peanut butter
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- Pinch salt
- 2/3 cup black currant jam
1. Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly butter a 9-inch square baking pan.
2. In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Add the butter and peanut butter, then mix with your hands until the mixture forms moist crumbs. Reserve 1 cup and set aside.
3. Firmly press the remaining mixture into the bottom of the pan. Bake until golden, about 20 minutes.
4. To make the filling, using the same large bowl, stir together the peanut butter, butter, confectioners' sugar, vanilla and salt until combined and smooth. Spread over the baked crust.
5. Drop tablespoons of jam onto the peanut butter filling and then use a butter knife to swirl the two together.
6. Scatter the reserved crumbs over the top. Bake until the crumbs are deep golden brown and the filling is almost set, about 25 minutes. Set the pan on a wire rack to cool. Cut into bars while still warm. Cook completely before serving.
Recipe reprinted with permission from "One Bowl Baking: Simple, From Scratch Recipes for Delicious Desserts" © 2013 by Yvonne Ruperti, Running Press, a member of the Perseus Books Group.