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Saturday, August 30, 2008

Nanaimo Bars

For serious sweet tooths (sweet teeth?) only :). This is a very easy, non-bake recipe, but it requires time (a total of about 3 hours) for the different layers to set. Recipe from my favorite Joy of Baking website.


For the bottom layer:
1/2 cup (8 oz, 113 g) butter at room temperature
1/4 cup (50 g) sugar
1/3 cup (30 g) unsweetened cocoa
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups (200 g) graham cracker crumbs
1 cup (65 g) coconut flakes
1/2 cup (50 g) walnuts, coarsely chopped

For the filling:
1/4 cup (4 oz, 56 g) butter at room temperature
2 - 3 tablespoons milk
2 tablespoons vanilla custard powder or vanilla pudding powder
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups (230 grams) powdered (confectioners, icing) sugar

For the topping:
4 oz (115 g) semisweet chocolate, chopped
1 tablespoon (14 g) butter


For the bottom layer:

Melt the butter in a saucepan over low heat.
Stir in the sugar and cocoa powder and then gradually whisk in the beaten egg.
Cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens (1 - 2 minutes).
Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla, crumbs, coconut, and chopped nuts.
Right away (otherwise it sticks to the pan) press the mixture evenly into a 9"x9" square pan.
Cover and refrigerate until firm.

For the filling:

Cream the butter.
Beat in sugar, pudding and vanilla.
Add the milk tablespoon by tablespoon until the mixture is thick, but spreadable. Be careful, as it is easy to make it too liquid.
Spread the filling over the bottom layer, cover, and once again refrigerate until firm.

For the top layer:

Melt the chocolate and butter in a double boiler if you have one or in a saucepan dipped into another saucepan filled with simmering water.
Spread over the filling and refrigerate.

To serve:
Recipe says to bring the squares to room temperature before cutting. I like to run a knife under hot water and carefully cut the squares straight from the fridge. You can skip both, but the chocolate will crack :).

* I didn't have any pudding powder this time, so I made my own pastry cream. And, of course, I misjudged the quantity, so there is much more cream in my version than there should be.

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