Monday, December 7, 2009

Cranberry Almond Bars

Cranberries make me happy. Do they make you happy, too? I actually smiled at them in the grocery store last week. {And then realized what I had done and quickly looked around to make sure no one saw me.}

These cranberry bars are cake-y, tart and wonderful. Actually, you could easily pass this off as coffee cake, but on a holiday dessert table, they would be so pretty!

Cranberry Almond Bars

3/4 cup unsalted butter, plus more for pan
1 & 1/2 c. sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp pure almond extract
1 & 1/2 c. unbleached, all-purpose flour
1/8 tsp coarse salt
2 c. fresh cranberries
1/3 c. slivered almonds

Melt the 3/4 c butter and set aside (or in the fridge) to cool.

Reserve 2 TBSP of the almonds for the top of the batter and chop the remaining. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 350. Butter a 8x 8" pan.

Beat the sugar and eggs for 3 minutes.

{Side note...I love when the expiration date on a carton of eggs is a holiday or birthday.}

Add the cooled melted butter and almond extract; beat until combined.

Whisk together the flour & salt. Add to the sugar/butter mixture and mix on low until combined.

Stir in the cranberries and chopped almonds.

Pour the mixture into the prepared pan...spread evenly with a offset spatula (if you have one). :) Sprinkle with the reserved almonds.

Bake about 50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out with crumbs, not wet. (Cover with foil the last 5 minutes of baking to prevent over-browning, if necessary.)

Cool in the pan on a cooling rack. Makes 12 bars.

Two sweet bakers asked if I would link up a recipe for their Christmas Cookie Carnivals. So, thank you to Shelly of Chic Craft Chick (today's carnival) and Liz of Hoosier Homemade (December 13th carnival) for thinking of me and asking me to play along! :)

This recipe is now linked at the Tasty Kitchen. Click on over for a printable version or to rate the recipe.

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  1. Cranberries are my absolute FAVE! You're funny... I always like to see a birthday on the occasional egg carton or milk carton too :

    Ally @ High Heels & Aprons

  2. we know i'm not big in the kitchen, but i have made cranberry bread before.

    for that recipe the cranberries are cut in half.

    is this something i could do if i tried this recipe? it sounds yummy!

    joann in tx

  3. I LOVE fresh cranberries in baked goods. I love how they really make an otherwise sweet and middling baked item pop! They're like winter rhubarb in that way :-)

    Beth @ 990 Square

  4. Cranberries will now make me smile too! Thanks for the post - I just love your writing and blog style.

  5. I too smile at cranberries. And I smile & talk to other fruit and chocolate (ALL the time to chocolate, usually telling it to "Get over here").

  6. This. looks. amazing. And very festive with the Christmas eggs and all!

  7. Mmm, yum! (Don't worry, I smile at food too). ;-)

  8. This looks like Christmas in a pan!

  9. Wow, looks so beautiful! You are right this would look great on a holiday table! I just used fresh cranberries for the first time at Thanksgiving and it was so fun! I see more recipes in my future!

  10. these look soo good~ esp. to a girl on a diet~

  11. Mmmm, cranberries make me happy too! They are high on my grocery list...hope to get there soon!

  12. These look yummy! At first glance I thought it was "bark" which shows up a lot this time of year. Happy to see that it was in fact bars, and how incredibly delicious they look. I love fresh cranberries.

  13. I squealed a little when I found cranberries at the grocery store yesterday (they'd been out of stock). Thankfully, my toddler was with me so I could blame it on him. I'd planned on baking some Christmas cookies today, but they may have to wait so I can make THIS. Thanks!

  14. Me encanta esta receta y todo tu blog, volveré por aquí...un beso

  15. Those look wonderful! I, too, love significant expiration dates. Glad to know I'm not alone:)

  16. These look heavenly! I love baking with cranberries, especially during the holidays. Yum!

  17. This looks great. Thanks for sharing!

  18. Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh Oh!
    These look divine!
    How funny! I smile at the cranberries too!
    What a happy thought!
    But I'm not smiling here lately at how much they are per $7.50!
    Had to smile too at that 12/25/09 expiration date!
    Only YOUR eggs would have that expiration date!
    Someday we need to chat about your camera...lens etc!

  19. yummm - these look delicious! i love cranberries and they're so good for you, too.

    recently found your blog and just love it - thanks for all the great tips!!

  20. Oh this sounds YUMMY!! I love cranberries, but never bake with them! I'm going to give this one a try!!........thanks for MORE calories! LOL

  21. LOL, you have some lucky kitty cats! These look delish! ;-)

  22. Your bars look delicious! Great way to enjoy the food of fall :)

  23. I absolutely adore cranberries... I have been stocking up on them each time I go to the store while they're still available! Love these bars... They look fantastic.

  24. Lots of cranberries... yum! If those cranberries only knew what you were going to do to them.

  25. I love cranberries too. I was surprised to find them the week after Thanksgiving at Aldi's for .39 a bag! Yup! Cool!
    Thanks for the shout out for my Cookie Exchange next Monday! I'm looking forward to seeing all the great recipes!

  26. These look so lovely, I love cranberries! Making these for Christmas morning! Regarding the dates on things - I am a teacher so I always look for that lovely June date - the last day of school! Once I see it showing up I know I just might make it to the end of another year of school! (-:

  27. These look great & I don't really even like cranberries. Do you think blueberries would work?

  28. Ah that's just a sale by date...I've been known to use eggs two months after that date :) Really. I am cheap like that.

    Recipe looks delish!

  29. This recipe looks so great and very festive for this time of year! I love all of your photos too...I'm very hungry now.

    Thank you for sharing!

  30. Cranberry is so great for you--can't wait to try these!

  31. I love cranberries! and this looks scrumptious!

    I never thought to look at the dates to see if they're a holiday! I will always think of you now when I do that! :)

  32. Thanks for joining the Cookie Exchange!
    BTW - I have squeeze bottles on my Christmas list ;-)
    Merry Christmas!

  33. The look amazing. I've been trying to come up with something cranberry that isn't a muffin, scone or bread. These look perfect!!

  34. This recipe sounds and looks AWESOME!!! THANKS!!!

  35. Just had to add that I too LOVE it when the expiry date on food stuffs I buy is a special date in our family diary too. My family think I'm odd ( they aren't wrong ) but I just think it's sooo personal to us.


  36. Ok, so remember how I made these the day you posted this? One of my friends saw my status on FB, and I sent her here for the recipe. She made them for a Christmas party and loved them. And I am making them again this week for Christmas!

  37. mmesOEG - hallo guys :D

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  41. Thank you! My wife made these over the holiday with some slight variations. First, she toasted the almonds. Second, she baked them in a 9 X 13 pan ... reducing the time by eye. Now my favorite cookie of all time.

  42. Just conferred with her. She put foil over the bars at 18 minutes and then took them out at 25 minutes.

  43. These are yummy, but the almond flavor is pretty overpowering. If I make again, I'll have to reduce the amount so that the cranberries have a chance to shine. It also took an extra 25 minutes, so an hour and fifteen minutes total. It was super wet after the initial 50.

  44. Just wondering if the slivered almonds should be salted or not. Thx!

    1. Hello Anonymous,

      The slivered almonds should be unsalted!


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