Coco-Berry Bake Bars

Posted on June 26, 2011

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I’ve been experimenting lately with cake bars. A slightly more solid version of cakey-lovelyness, which seem popular in a lot of my American and Australian cookbooks.

The traditional sponge in all it’s forms still reigns supreme in tea shops and kitchens in the UK, but I think there may also be a place for these creations too.

Slightly sturdier, served in moreish squares like a fruit-riddled brownie they are at home alongside a mug of tea, though perhaps not able to elevate themselves to a cup and saucer affair.

This particular recipe is a little faffy (you are warned), as there are a few separate cooking stages to get to your-three layered delight. On a positive notes, it means lots of different spoons to lick (chefs perks).

The oat, coconut and almond granola topping will make about twice as much as you need, so save the remaining for breakfast with fruit and yoghurt and your efforts will be doubly appreciated!

Coco-Berry Bake Bars (makes 9-12)

 Oat & Coconut Granola

2tbsp butter, 2 tbsp honey, 50g brown sugar, 140g rolled oats, 50g flaked almonds, 60g desiccated coconut

Berry Bake

75g ground almonds, 240g plain flour, 75g icing sugar, 1 1/2 tsp baking powder, 1/2 tsp salt, 180g butter, 1 large egg, 1 egg yolk, 1tsp vanilla essence, 300g summer berries, 100g jam (blackberry/raspberry/strawberry)

First, you’ll need to make the granola. You can do this ahead of time if easier. Heat the oven to 180c/GM4. Melt the butter honey and sugar in a saucepan. Stir through the oats, almonds and coconut. Spread onto a baking sheet and then bake for 25-35 minutes until golden. Remove and leave to cool.

Next, make the base of the berry bake. Mix together almonds, flour, sugar and salt. Mix the butter in, either in a food processor or with your fingers, until a breadcrumb consistency forms. Beat the egg, yolk and vanilla together and pour into the almond mixture. Mix until a stiff dough is formed and chill for 30 minutes. Grease and line a medium-sized  square baking dish, at least 2 inches deep. Preheat oven to 180c/GM 4. Roll-out dough to fit base of cake tin. Place in cake tin and prick dough all over with a fork. Bake for 20-30 minutes until golden and firm. Mix jam with berries and spread over the baked dough. Cover with a generous layer of granola and bake for a further 30 minutes. Remove and leave to cool before cutting into squares and serving.

 

Enjoy eating,

Helen x

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