Tuesday, April 26, 2011

PB &J Bars

When I was younger I was the pickiest eater in the entire world. No. I am not exaggerating.  My daily meals consisted of cereal for breakfast, plain pasta with a little bit of butter for dinner and every single day I ate Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich on whole wheat bread for lunch. Thank you mother for forcing whole wheat bread down my throat as I now find white bread revolting and whole wheat is better for me anyway.  

Needless to say, the epic PB & J combo is something that I often (and quite randomly) crave. Crave, as in ABSOLUTELY need.  I browsed my collection of genius blogs and stumbled upon The Sweets Life's brilliant PB & J masterpiece.  With a couple of tweaks (I am a heavy up Jelly girl, not a PB queen) I created this fantastically satisfying walk down Childhood Lane.

1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter (wish I had reduced fat but the Deli only had regular)
3/4 cup brown sugar
 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 cups unsweetened Applesauce
1 1/2 tablespoons egg whites
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 cup raspberry preserves 

1) Preheat oven to 350F. 
2) Line 9 x 13 brownie baking pan with tinfoil and spray with cooking spray.
3) In a small bowl. whisk together flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside.
4) Beat butter, peanut butter, and sugar in a large bowl with an electric mixer until smooth
5) Add applesauce, egg whites and vanilla and beat in slowly with the electric mixer
6) Add flour mixture, beating on low just until blended.
7) Transfer 3/4 of the dough into prepared pan smoothing out evenly with your fingers and pressing onto the bottom of the pan. 
8) Place remaining dough in the refrigerator while doing the next step
9) Spread jelly over the crust evenly. 
10) Remove remaining dough from fridge and sprinkle in grape-size pieces on top of jelly
11) Bake bars for 30 to 45 minutes, until golden brown on top.
12) Cool bars completely in the pan on a cooling rack. 
13) Lift foil from pan to remove bars and cut into 28 squares

These are fantastic.  My love/obsession with jelly was completely satisfying and the PB was delish but not overwhelming as it easily can be. 

Cant wait to serve them at dinner tonight. Hope everyone loves em :)

Personally, I give them the below Star Fabulous Rating...

Star Fabulous Rating: 9/10

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