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Cranberry Bliss Bars

Cranberry Bliss Bars

I admit it, I love Starbucks.

Starbucks Cranberry Bliss Bars on Nutmeg Disrupted

I really love Starbucks. I have made so many memories in their coffee shops. Hanging out with my girlfriends, Tweet Ups, the first time meeting an online friend who flew out from the opposite end of the country, business meetings, to sitting there alone, headphones on, writing, thinking, people watching.

Nutmeg Disrupted hanging out at Starbucks

The hours must be in the hundreds. Even though I go there for the coffee I have on occasion tried some of the baked goods they offer.

Now one who’s never enjoyed white chocolate, I am surprisingly smitten with their Cranberry Bliss Bars.

Having moved to a small town in the middle of nowhere I am sorely lacking my Starbucks fix. After recently hitting one in Chapters after doing some Christmas shopping I bought one of those triangles of sweet cranberry love. And it has been on my mind ever since.

 

Cranberry Bliss Bars

3/4 cup butter

1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar

2 large eggs

3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 cup dried cranberries

6 ounces white baking chocolate, coarsely chopped

 

Frosting

1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened

1 cup powdered sugar

6 ounces white baking chocolate, melted with 1 teaspoon of shortening

1/2 cup dried cranberries, chopped

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spray a 9×13-inch baking dish with nonstick spray.

In a medium bowl, melt butter for one minute in the microwave, stir in brown sugar, let cool to room temperature. Use an electric mixer to beat in the eggs and vanilla. In a separate bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt and cinnamon, gradually add all the ingredients to the mixer bowl.

Cranberry Bliss Bar Topping on Nutmeg Disrupted

 Stir in the cranberries and chopped chocolate. The batter will be very thick, almost like a cookie dough.

Cranberry Bliss Bars on Nutmeg Disrupted

Pat the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 18-21 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool completely.

In a large bowl, use an electric mixer to beat the cream cheese and powdered sugar until well-blended.

 Gradually add half of the melted white chocolate, beat until blended. Frost the cookie base. Sprinkle with cranberries. Drizzle with remaining melted white chocolate. Cut into bars- square or triangle-shaped.

Cranberry Bliss Bars on Nutmeg Disrupted

Store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

 

 

 

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Chocolate Lentil Brownies

Chocolate Lentil Brownies

Still on my lentil kick I decided to try another recipe from The Big Book of Little Lentils cookbook.

This time I chose to do a variation of the Lentil Brownies they share.

I took them to work and the reviews were fantastic! Everyone was surprised that they were infact made with lentils!

Making brownies with lentils on Nutmeg Disrutped

For this recipe you need to make a lentil puree. That is simply cooking lentils until they are done then pureeing them in a food processor. I didn’t add any extra water to the cooked lentils.

Chocolate Lentil Brownies
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: Lentil Based
Ingredients
  • ½ cup of butter
  • ½ cup of lentil puree
  • ¾ cup of cocoa
  • 2 cups of sugar
  • ¾ teaspoon of salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla
  • 1 cup of flour
  • 3 cups of chocolate chips
  • 1 cup of toasted pecans - chopped
Instructions
  1. Melt the butter.
  2. Mix in the lentil puree, cocoa, salt and sugar.
  3. Add the eggs one at a time.
  4. Mix in the vanilla, flour, one cup of the chocolate chips and ¾ cup of the toasted pecans.
  5. Line a 9 x9 baking pan with parchment paper.
  6. Bake the brownies at 350 degrees for 22 minutes or until a tooth pick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  7. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the remaining 2 cups of chocolate chips.
  8. Cover the entire pan with a cookie sheet and let sit for 5 minutes.
  9. Using an offset spatula spread the melted chocolate chips over the entire surface of the brownie. Sprinkle with the ¼ cup chopped pecans.
  10. Allow to cool.
  11. Remove from the pan and cut into squares.

 

If I may dare say, these are a fool proof recipe. Brownies can be tricky finding that balance between under and over cooking. I know I have often had brownies with very hard edges only to find the center extremely soft. These were a nice moist brownies with no hard edges.

Perfect!

 


Chocolate Lentil Brownies on Nutmeg Disrupted

 

 

 

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Pumpkin Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars

Pumpkin Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars

Just the name alone Pumpkin Peanut Butter Oatmeal bars, where can you go wrong.

More like where can you go right!

When I seen the Tweet Tuesday afternoon I immediately walked over and hit 350 on the oven.

This little gem comes from Averie over at Love Veggies and Yoga.

It is a fantastic recipe with many different variations, using more or less of what you enjoy the most.

For the first batch I use the main recipes and I added a 1/4 cup of dark chocolate mini chocolate chips and a 1/4 cup of regular sized butterscotch chips.

It turned out quite light and soft. A very tender bar. If it had cooked it a few minutes longer with would be more firm, I was just cautious to not over cook it and have it too hard or dry.

The addition of the chips was nice but I think for the second batch I will go with the main recipe plus raisins and a touch more cinnamon.

I like a bit more chew to my bars and the raisins will add just the bite I am looking for.

Plus, omitting the chocolate chips will also result in a firmer bar. I also used one cup of white sugar in the first batch as I just ran out of brown.

For the second batch I used one cup of brown sugar and a half cup of raisins.
I really enjoy it without all the chocolate chips. It is a touch more firm and has that granola bar flavor, which I espically enjoy!

Which ever variation you try, it will be hard to stop at just one! And before I forget to mention, these are gluten free!

From love veggies and yoga:

Pumpkin Peanut Butter Oatmeal Bars

1/2 cup peanut butter

1 cup pumpkin puree

2 cups oats – whole rolled, not quick cooking

1 cup brown sugar – packed

1/2 cup white sugar

1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice – reduce/increase to taste

1 tsp cinnamon – reduce/increase to taste

1 tbsp vanilla extract

options: raisins, chocolate,whiite, peanutbutter or butterscotch chips.  Up to a half cup.

 

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