Mar 6 2013

Sweet Monday

This week I dug into my easy wins with a modified version of this recipe. (Psst. I ignore all her optionals and do white chocolate and dried cherries. Details are below.) This was supposed to be easy because I needed to make two separate batches.

Aside from Sweet Monday at Design Cloud, I was jazzed to bake to support the Sugar Beet Co-op‘s film screening as part of the One Earth Food Festival. My dears at the Beet, Cheryl & Jenny, were putting together a luncheon. As a proud co-op member (and general helper outer) I said I’d bring something.

And that something went horribly awry. Underdone in the center and a nearly scorched earth diorama on the edges. I wound up carving out cooked-enough pieces and sending Brett to deliver the sad, sweet shrapnel.

I was flummoxed. I screw all kinds of things up in my daily life. This recipe is not one of those things. When we bought the house and redid the kitchen, we got a double oven specifically so that I could use the top oven for baking (less energy, just kind of sounds cool). The top oven has consistently not done a great job with baking at temp or on time. I’ve been setting it 5º higher and baking for a few minutes longer, both of which did me heaps of not much here.

After the CopperTop was up for an hour in the wee hours and I was up again at the crack of dawn feverishly packing my brown sugar, I demanded redemption. Replaced the baking powder and soda. Used the larger oven in our double oven. Let the eggs reach room temperature. If baking is like science, a scientist should tweak one thing at a time. But even if it is, I am not and I went to tweaking town. It still took about 15 minutes longer than it should’ve. And the edges were still dancing way too close to crispy. But there was no shrapnel.

And the best part is that I caught an express train so I arrived with still warm treats to tempt. And tempt they did, crispy edges and all.


Tempted? Assuming you don’t screw them up as much as me, they’re worth it.

Oatmeal Blondies with White Chocolate and Dried Cherry

  • 1 cup butter at room temperature
  • 1 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup white sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • chocolate chips (optional)
  • raisins (optional)
  • chopped walnuts (optional)
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips
  • 1 cup dried cherries
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease and flour a 9×13-inch baking pan.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the butter, brown sugar, and white sugar until thoroughly mixed and creamy. Beat in the eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Stir in the vanilla extract until well mixed, and mix in salt, baking soda, baking powder, flour, rolled oats, plus other junk. Mix well to moisten all ingredients, and spread into the prepared baking pan.
  3. Bake in the preheated oven until golden brown, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool in the pan for about 5 minutes before cutting into bars.

**Clearly step 3 is full of crap. I baked those beasts for a hundred hours. Raw in the middle. Burned on the edges. I felt shame.
***Clearly the next logical step is for me to get the oven (ovens?) checked. Sigh.