Thursday, June 19, 2014

Cranberry Crumb Bars

Cranberry Crumb Bars lemon berries dessert
Cranberry Crumb Bars
Crumb bars are another one of my favorite go-to recipes for a quick and easy dessert.  These work well with berries though I'd be interested to try peaches one day.  I've used blueberries, raspberries, and blackberries before and they all turned out great.  This time I had a bag of cranberries that I froze way back when so those came out of the freezer and straight into this recipe.  No defrosting necessary!  I paired cranberries with lemon here, but it was kind of tart so I'd substitute orange for the lemon next time.

Once again these made their way to work and fared much better than the coffee cake!  Perhaps the notion of fruit makes it seem "healthier"?

Cranberry Crumb Bars
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

3/4 cup white sugar
1 tsp baking powder
3 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
Zest and juice of one lemon
1 cup cold unsalted butter (2 sticks or 8 ounces), cut into pieces
1 egg

1 12-oz. bag cranberries, fresh or frozen (or 4 cups berries or other fruit)
1/2 cup white sugar
4 tsp cornstarch
  1. Preheat the oven to 375F. Grease a 9×13 inch pan.
  2. In a medium bowl, stir together 3/4 cup sugar, 3 cups flour, and baking powder. Mix in salt and lemon zest. Use a fork, pastry cutter, or your fingers to blend in the butter and egg. Dough will be quite crumbly. Pat half of dough into the prepared pan, pushing down to make sure the crust is compact.
  3. In another bowl, stir together the remaining 1/2 cup sugar, cornstarch and lemon juice. Gently mix in the cranberries. Sprinkle the berry mixture evenly over the crust. Crumble remaining dough evenly over the berry layer.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 50 minutes, or until top is slightly brown. Cool completely then cut into squares. Makes about 28 squares.
Other variations:
Blueberry and lemon
Blackberry and lime
Raspberry and lemon
Peaches and orange (possibly with grated ginger)

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