Friday, January 09, 2009


It's been a rough week for Miss Mina. On Thursday, we went from this:

So mopey..

But, today was a new day.

Pretty much back to normal.

While Jordan was at school, Mina helped me bake some Blackberry Crumb Bars - courtesy of Martha Stewart's Everyday Living (June 2008). These were so good - I had to give half away to Jordan's teacher at pick up so I wouldn't eat them all over the weekend.

Food pushing is my typical strategy when I'm trying to restrict my calories for the week. I pretty much ate my way through the holidays and now have to pay the piper.

I do love to bake though, so I made a batch - with Mina's help. I ate one, I let her have some, I shared some with Jordan after school, gave some to his teacher, fed some to Monkey Sr., and now I've put the rest waaaaay back in the far recesses of the refrigerator.

Out of sight... out of mind.

Blackberry Crumb Bars - Martha Stewart, Everyday Food, June 2008

6 Tbl butter, melted, and 1/2 cup at room temperature, plus more for pan.

1 3/4 cups all purpose flour, plus more for pan. (divided)

1/2 cup light brown sugar (I used dark brown)

1/2 tsp salt (divided)

1/2 tsp baking pwd.

1 cup confectioner's sugar

1/2 tsp vanilla extract

2 large eggs

2 containers blackberries, 5 oz. each (I guessed. You need enough to cover the surface area of the batter once it's spread in the pan).

Preheat oven to 350. Butter an 8 inch baking pan and line with parchment paper. Leave an overhang. Butter and flour the paper, shake off excess.

Make topping - In a medium bowl, whisk together the melted butter, brown sugar, and 1/4 tsp salt; add 1 cup flour, and mix with a fork until large, moist crumbs form. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Next, in a medium bowl, whisk together the remaining 3/4 cup flour, baking powder, and remaining 1/4 tsp salt. Set aside. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the room temperature butter, confectioner's sugar, and vanilla until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time and beat well after each one. Mix in flour mixture. Spread batter evenly in pan. Sprinkle with blackberries. Top with the chilled topping.

Bake for 40 - 45 minutes until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Cool completely in the pan. Lift the cake, using the paper overhang onto a work surface and cut into 16 squares.

Good recipe for kids - lots of thing to dump into a pan, lots of chances to hold the electric mixer, plenty of fresh fruit to nibble on during the boring measuring bits.
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