Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Butterscotch Bars

OK, sorry, late again. It's Tuesday afternoon. But this time I have a really really good excuse. I was away in Pebble Beach enjoying a weekend with my husband. Please find it in your heart to forgive me. I know you will. And alas, better late than never. I'll get back on track with Mondays next week, I promise, pinky swear even. OK enough excuses, on to cooking.

As a graphic designer, when people ask me what my favorite color is, I always reply "All of them." I really believe that each color has a purpose and when used properly it is "the perfect color".  I pretty much feel the same about cooking ingredients. Each flavor and texture is unique and when used to it's potential it becomes "perfect". Well, all that being said, if I had to choose, butterscotch chips would definitely fall into my "Top 10". There isn't anything else like them, smooth, creamy and totally unique in flavor. I just can't find enough ways to use them. I sneak them into chocolate chip cookies, sprinkle them on brownies. They are divine in oatmeal cookies and make a wonderful butterscotch "fantasy fudge". Heck, I'll even sneak a few out of the bag from time to time. They are just that good! So whenever I'm asked to bring something for a bake sale or pot luck, Butterscotch Bars are my first thought. On a table full of brownies and chocolate chip cookies, they really stand out. If you like butterscotch, you're sure to love these. So enjoy!

Butterscotch Bars

Here is what you'll need: butter, butterscotch chips (I always use Nestlé, feel free to experiment with another brand but I'm chicken!), sugar, vanilla, eggs, flour, vanilla malted milk powder (I know, wacky, but it adds a unique flavor, trust me.), baking powder, salt and chocolate chips.

Put the butter and butterscotch chips in a 3 qt. saucepan and gently melt on low heat. Stir frequently and keep the heat low, the butterscotch chips tend to burn.

Don't expect it to come together, it doesn't. Just keep stirring until all the butter and chips are melted. You may have to "mash" some of the chips along the bottom of the pan to get them all incorporated.

What you end up with is this alien-looking mass of goo. That's OK. Just take it off the heat and let it cool a bit.

In a mixing bowl, stir together the flour, malt powder, baking powder and salt.

Once the "alien goo" has cooled a bit (you don't want it to cook the eggs). Add  the sugar, eggs and vanilla and stir until well combined.

Add the butterscotch mixture to your dry ingredients and stir well. Make sure to scrape the bottom of the bowl and get it all mixed together.

Now, spread it evenly into you greased pan.

Sprinkle the chocolate chips evenly on top and press them down gently into the batter.  And into a 325°F oven they go. Just 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Start checking at about 25 minutes.

Let them cool completely and then cut into bars.

Mmmmm, moist and chewy and butterscotchy.

Butterscotch Bars
Makes Approx. 4 dozen

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 package butterscotch chips (11oz.)
3/4 C. sugar
1 t. vanilla
3 eggs
1-3/4 C. all-purpose flour
1/2 C. Vanilla Malt Powder
1 t. baking powder
1/4 t. salt
1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325°F.
Grease bottom of 13x9 pan.
Heat butter and butterscotch chips over low heat, stirring constantly, until melted. Remove from heat and set aside to cool slightly. Beat in sugar, vanilla and eggs.
In a separate mixing bowl, stir together flour, malt powder, baking powder and salt.
Add in butterscotch mixture and stir until well combined.
Spread evenly into pan. Sprinkle chocolate chips on top and press down slightly.
Bake at 325°F for 30-35 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely.
Cut into 2x1 inch bars.

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