Sunday, June 28, 2015

Cherry Almond Bars

I LOVE the combination of cherries and almonds. These contemporary bars can not taste any more perfect. They state summer, they state American and you will not be able to be satisfied with only one piece. This desert is perfect for 4th of July celebrations or in my case any day of the year. It is made with canned cherries vs cherry pie filling and that makes all the difference in the world. But I should stop bragging about it. This desert will speak for itself. Enjoy! 


2 blocks - unsalted butter

2 cups - vanilla milk (or white) chocolate chips

4 eggs

1 cup - sugar

2 cups - flour

1/2 teaspoon - salt

2 teaspoons -  amaretto or almond extract

2 cans - canned cherries (Oregon brand preferably), well drained

1/4 of a cup - sliced almonds + more for garnish

sweet raw cherries for garnish

blueberries for garnish (optional if you desire to decorate the bars as the American flag)


Heat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease 9" by 13" baking dish. Melt butter in a small sauce pan over low heat. Remove from heat. Add ONLY 1 cup of the vanilla chips. LET STAND; DO NOT STIR.

In a large bowl, beat eggs until foamy. Gradually add sugar, beating at high speed until lemon-colored. Stir in vanilla milk chip mixture. Add flour, salt and amaretto; mix at low speed until just combined.

Spread half of batter (about 2 cups) in greased and floured pan. Bake at 325 F for 15 - 20 min or until light golden brown.

Stir remaining 1 cup vanilla milk chips into remaining half of batter; set aside.

Warm up the canned cherries in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Stir and mash the cherries until they look like they are easily spreadable. If too much juice, drain. Spread evenly over warm, partially baked crust. Sprinkle with 1/4 cup of almonds.

Gently spoon teaspoonfuls of remaining batter over fruit and almond spread hiding the fruit. If fruit still shows sprinkle more almonds.

Return to oven; bake an additional 25 to 35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely. Decorate with fresh cherry halves and almonds. Blueberries as well if desired to decorate bars as the American flag. Cut into bars and enjoy!

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