The Great Cookie Experiment – Chocolate Raspberry Squares

For those just joining our Experiment, the Great Cookie Experiment is a once a week recipe and commentary by Julie Barnson.  She’s bravely tackling cookie recipes that she’s clipped, cut or been given but just never got around to making.  The stellar recipes will earn a permanent place in her cookbook, while those that fail to measure up?  Back in the bin with you!

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Chocolate Raspberry Squares

I really can’t see anything that could be bad about cookies that combine chocolate and raspberry.  I also can’t see why I would just let a recipe like this just sit in my cookbook unmade for years.  I must clearly repent of this grievous sin.

When I started to make this recipe, I was a little disappointed at the servings.  I think if I’m going to go to the trouble of making a batch of cookies, it should make more than 16 servings.  The fact that it is cooked in only a 9 inch square pan just seemed small.  I want at LEAST two dozen cookies.  So I cut the bars smaller.  This was not a problem.  The cookies are rich and smaller is a good thing.  If you still want  generous bar portions, double the batch.

The recipe calls for seedless raspberry jam.  Being affiliated with Cornaby’s, and working for them at farmer’s markets and other demonstrations, I have become a jam snob.  I have a problem with jams or spreadable fruits that are made with high fructose corn syrup, and that contain more sweetener than fruit.  I used Cornaby’s brand, and the result was a rich raspberry taste that wasn’t cloyingly sweet.  I would absolutely recommend a high quality raspberry jam when you make these.  (This is not a paid product endorsement.  This really is the opinion of the writer.)

The cookies ended up being very rich and decadent.  The semisweet chocolate combined with the raspberry was a powerful flavor combination!  The base cookie, was fine, if a little crumbly.  I might try a different bar base with this one day just to see if I liked it better, but it was good.  There is ONE thing that I need to mention, and it’s very important, because if you are like me, you are going to make the same mistake I did.  This cookie is MUCH BETTER if you wait until it’s cool.  I know!  I love my cookies when the chocolate is ooey gooey too, but you have to trust me on this one.  The raspberry flavor is stronger and tastier when you wait until the cookie is fully cooled, and the chocolate doesn’t overpower everything.  Wait.  It’s worth it.

Chocolate Raspberry Squares

1 ½ c flour

1 ½ c oats

½ c sugar

½ c packed brown sugar

¼ tsp salt

1 c cold butter

¾ c seedless raspberry jam

1 package semisweet chocolate chunks (I used chocolate chips.  I don’t think it matters)

¼ c chopped walnuts (I left these out because I have a friend who thinks they’re poison.)

In a large bowl, combine flour, oats, sugars and salt.  Cut in butter until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs.  Set aside 1 cup for a topping; press remaining crumb mixture into a greased 9 inch square baking pan.  Spread with jam.  Sprinkle with chocolate chunks.  Combine the walnuts and reserved crumb mixture.  Sprinkle over the top.  Bake at 375 for 30-35 minutes or until lightly browned and bubbly.  Cool on a wire rack.  Cut into squares.  16 servings.

Chocolate Raspberry Bars

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