A buttery, whole wheat crust is topped with a sweet, almond filling in these chewy and delicious little bars.
In high school I kept a series of journals for about four years, documenting my family’s daily activities. If anyone were to ever go back and read those journals, the two conclusions they would probably draw are: my family is a little weird, and my life would never make for an intriguing biography. The most important thing is that I have those memories though. There are so many small, special occurrences that happen day to day, and we often think to ourselves, “I’ll never forget this”. Unfortunately, many times we do forget. That’s why I love those journals.
All of this is on my mind because I’m on a mission this week to sort through our possessions and get rid of anything that we no longer use or need. Obviously, special items like photo albums and journals aren’t going anywhere, but I think it’s important to take inventory every once in awhile and remove large amounts of “random stuff”. Yesterday I tackled my clothes closet. (Yikes.) It’s been years since I sorted through that jungle. When I was in my early to mid twenties I went through an ultra trendy clothes phase, and now a lot of the stuff I used to wear is either no longer in style or I pull it out and I think, “What…what is this, why did I ever wear it, and why didn’t someone tell me how ridiculous it looks?!”
*insert video clip of Katherine standing in front of her closet while tossing clothes and shoes over her shoulder* “Nope, nope, maybe, nope, keeping that, what is THIS?!, nope.” (Etc, etc.) My 6-inch sandal wedges with gold straps are now in the garage sale pile. I think I wore those ridiculous looking things once and that was it.
Today I plan to continue my aforementioned task, as well as trying out a few new recipe ideas. I haven’t been working on recipes as much this week due to other things weighing on my mind, but I’m looking forward to spending a little time experimenting in the kitchen later this afternoon.
Has anyone else ever thought about the fact that there really isn’t a good synonym for “recipe”? I hate using the same word so repetitiously in my posts. Food formula? Baking blueprint? I’ve got to come up with something.
Ok, for now I’m sharing the formula for these Chewy Almond Bars. Like many of my baking blueprints, this was a last minute idea that came together on a Friday when I decided I wasn’t in the mood for the other dessert I was planning to make. (This happens a lot. Poor Casey.) “What? I thought you were making cookies tonight.” “Eh, I wasn’t in the mood for cookies so I made a pie instead.”
These bars classify as a healthy-ish dessert (depending on who you are and what your definition of healthy is), as they are made with whole wheat flour and sweetened with Sucanat. I specifically call for Sucanat rather than any whole cane sugar in this recipe, because it adds such a nice flavor. In many recipes, regular refined sugar can be substituted for Sucanat, but for these bars I recommend using brown sugar if you don’t have Sucanat on hand.
Enjoy and happy Friday!
Chewy Almond Bars
- 1 cup whole wheat flour
- 1/2 cup Sucanat
- 1/2 cup butter, slightly softened
- 1 cup Sucanat
- 2 eggs
- 2 Tablespoons whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup almonds
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly grease a 13×9 pan and set aside.
Crust: In a medium bowl, stir together 1 cup whole wheat flour and 1/2 cup Sucanat. Cut in butter until crumbly. Press mixture into prepared pan and bake for 10-12 minutes. Remove from oven.
Filling: While crust is baking, beat eggs and 1 cup Sucanat together until blended. Mix in 2 Tablespoons whole wheat flour, vanilla, almond extract, and salt. Stir in almonds. Spread filling over baked crust and return to oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until edges are turning golden brown.
Note: Sucanat is a minimally processed whole cane sugar, and is one of my favorite sweeteners to use in baking. I typically just call for whole cane sugar in recipes instead of Sucanat specifically, and in some recipes regular refined sugar can simply be substituted for the Sucanat. However, with these almond bars, I personally prefer the flavor of Sucanat, and if you don’t have any on hand I recommend using brown sugar instead of regular sugar.
~K in the Kitchen