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Cranberry-pistachio crumble bars

Cranberry-pistachio crumble bars. (Nov. 20, 2012)

Cranberry-pistachio crumble bars. (Nov. 20, 2012) Credit: Doug Young


2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

1 cup sugar

2 large eggs

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

3/4 cup shelled pistachio nuts, coarsely chopped

1 1/2 cups cranberry relish or preserves

Confectioners' sugar for dusting (optional)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place oven racks in bottom third and top third of oven. Line a 13-by-9-inch baking pan with heavy-duty aluminum foil, making sure foil is tucked into corners and there is at least 1 inch overhanging top of pan on all sides.

2. Combine flour, baking powder, and salt in a medium bowl.

3. Combine butter and sugar in a large mixing bowl and cream together with an electric mixer until smooth. Stir in eggs. Stir in vanilla. Stir in flour mixture.

4. Use a spatula to smooth half of batter in an even layer across bottom of pan. Place pan in freezer. Stir pistachios into remaining batter and place in freezer for 15 minutes.

5. Remove pan from freezer and spread cranberry mixture in an even layer on top of dough. Pinch off pieces of remaining dough and scatter evenly over cranberries.

6. Place pan on bottom oven rack and bake for 20 minutes. Transfer pan to top rack and bake until top is light golden, another 5 to 10 minutes. Let pan cool completely on a wire rack.

7. Grasping overhanging foil on either side of pan, lift out bar and place on a cutting board. Cut into 24 squares. Sift confectioners' sugar over bars, if desired, just before serving. Bars will keep at room temperature in an airtight container for 2 to 3 days. Makes 24 squares.

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