Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Scotch Oat Bars

These aren't much to look at. Kind of plain. A bit boring. Kind of hard to photograph with my iPhone that I'm using since my regular camera is being funky today and I don't feel like trying to figure it out because I'm tired and seriously this is one long run-on sentence. Whew. This recipe fits perfectly with my mood this week. Which is "just get it done". It ain't fancy, it ain't complicated but the result is one tasty treat. 
All you need is just 5 ingredients, I'm betting you already have them in the pantry, an 8x8 pan, a spoon and a sauce pan. My mom used to make these all the time. I think the fact that they are mostly oatmeal made her feel like they weren't so bad. Let's just ignore the butter and sugar, shall we? I shall. So if you are short on time but in the mood for something sweet, stir up a pan of these and enjoy!

This is it, all you need: Quick Oats (DO NOT use "Old Fashioned" oats, you really really need the quick, "cooks in 1 minute" kind for this recipe, trust me!), butter, brown sugar, salt and baking powder. You can also add vanilla, I do, but it's not in the original recipe so I didn't show it.

Start by putting the butter and brown sugar in a medium sized saucepan. Heat on medium low heat just until butter melts.

You aren't looking to cook or boil this mixture, just get the butter liquid and the sugar all stirred in. Turn off the heat.

Add the remaining ingredients: oats, salt and baking powder. If you want to add vanilla, 1 teaspoon, do it here.

Get it all mixed together and dump it out into a well greased 8"x8" pan.

Press firmly into an even layer. Bake in a 350°F oven for 20-25 minutes.

This is how it should look. This was 20 minutes in my oven. So when it gets close check on it. You don't want the edges to burn or be any darker than this picture.

Using a very sharp, thin knife, cut them while still warm. It is REALLY hard to cut them after they are cooled so don't skip this step.

Now I dare you not to eat the whole pan. I ate three while writing this post. Granted, they aren't much to look at, not really fancy at all, but boy do they taste good. And so, so, so easy to make.

Scotch Oat Bars
1/2 C. (one stick) unsalted butter (skip the salt if you use salted butter)
1 C. brown sugar
2 C. quick cooking oats
1/4 t. salt
1 t. baking powder
1 t. vanilla (optional)

Preheat oven to 350°F.
Combine butter and sugar in a medium saucepan. Heat and stir just until butter melts.
Stir in remaining ingredients.
Pour into a well greased 8"x8" square pan and press into an even layer.
Bake for 20-25 minutes until edges are dark caramel brown but not burned.
Cut into 2-inch squares while still warm, then let cool completely before serving.
Makes 16 squares.

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