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Saturday, July 10, 2010

Orange Marmalade Bars

My lovely and talented cousin, Genny, designed a beautiful invitation for my mom and dad's 50th wedding anniversary. Today was the day to punch and stick and glue all the bits and pieces together. They came out so darn cute. I'd post one here, but my mom is getting hers in the mail and I want it to be a surprise. Maybe I'll post it in a few days.

I wanted to bring a sweet treat for our luncheon today, so I made these orange marmalade bars. They were inspired by Giada on Food Network, but you know I had to do it my way. She used a tube of refrigerated sugar cookie dough for the base of hers and marmalade from the store. I have plenty of marmalade at my house, so no need to buy that. You all can use the purchased dough if it makes your life easier, but I'd rather make my own than make a trip to the store.

For my base, I used the Vanilla Nut Icebox Cookie recipe from this McCall's Cookie Collection book from 1965. This is one of the many cookbooks I inherited when we moved into my great grandma's house. One of the things I like about this book is that it gives a basic technique and then a number of variations. I think of most of my cooking in component parts that can be changed around to suit me. For example, this flavor combination is vanilla cookie, marmalade, toasted almonds and very dark chocolate. I think I would also like to try this with almond cookie, cherry preserves, toasted almonds and very dark chocolate. It's always got to be dark chocolate.

Here's the finished product. Yum Yum Yum! Luckily, I was able to disperse these treats after eating only two. If any of you out there in the blososphere try this with different flavor combinations, I'd love to hear about it.

Orange Marmalade Bars

2 cups all purpose flour

1 1/2 tsp. baking powder

1/2 tsp. salt

2/3 cup soft butter

1 cup sugar

1 egg

1 tsp. vanilla extract

1 1/2 cups good orange marmalade (I like mine!)

4 oz. toasted sliced almonds (Trader Joe's sells them in an 8 oz. bag)

4 oz. dark chocolate (I used Girardelli's 60 % cacao chocolate chips)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Sift the flour, baking powder and salt together onto a flexible cutting board or parchment paper.
Beat the butter and gradually add sugar. Beat in the egg and vanilla. Beat until light and fluffy.
Gradually beat in the flour mixture. Spray a 9 x 13 inch pan with non-stick spray and spread with the cookie mixture. Bake in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes. Allow to cool and spread with the marmalade, then sprinkle with the toasted sliced almonds. Melt the chocolate in the microwave. I use the defrost setting for one minute at a time until the chocolate can be stirred smooth. Use a teaspoon to drizzle the chocolate over the almonds in a cross hatch design. Allow the chocolate to set before cutting. Makes 18 bars.

I know I usually give you the calories. Right now, I just don't want to know. Enjoy!

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