I have never had the patience to make bars before since there is more work involved than making a cake or a brownie. For a bar, there are multiple layers and that means more work. To be honest, I have never eaten any of those time consuming bars, so I never knew what I was missing.
At a bake sale at my son’s school, I happened upon the best bake of my life. It was raspberry bar brownies made by the kid’s grandmother. I ended up buying all the brownies from her (about 5 or 6 – that’s all that was there). I don’t regret those calories a bit. It was a work of art – I took a picture of it in the hope that I can look for a similar recipe somewhere. It had a shortbread base, chocolate layer, crumb top and raspberry jam swirled on top. Oh it was delicious!!
The point of the story was to show why I decided to make these oatmeal chocolate bar. After knowing what the ‘bar world’ had to offer, it’s difficult to stay away from there. So I tried this recipe from my Hershey’s book. These are quite good. You are good as long as you don’t compare it with the raspberry swirls. Nothing comes close to that one, actually :-)
Read on for the recipe. This goes to Cooking from Cookbook Challenge Group
Recipe source: Hershey’s Make it Chocolate
- Chocolate filling, recipe below
- 1 cup butter
- 2 cups packed brown sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 cups quick cooking oats
- 2.5 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- pinch salt
- 1 cup walnuts
- 1/2 cup butter (~100 gms)
- 2/3 cup cocoa powder
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 14 oz can condensed milk
Melt 1/2 cup butter in a thick pan over low heat. Add Stir in 1/2 cup sugar and 2/3 cup cocoa powder. Mix well.
Add a 14 oz can of condensed milk and cook stirring continuously. Remove from heat when the mixture is smooth and thick. Set aside.
Heat oven to 350 F. Grease and line a 9 X 13″ pan with parchment paper. In the bowl of a stand mixer, beat 1 cup butter (~220 gms) with 2 cups light brown sugar. When the mix is light and fluffy, add the two eggs and 1 teaspoon vanilla and beat it in.
In another bowl, combine 3 cups oats, 2.5 cups flour, 1 cup walnuts, 1 teaspoon baking powder and a pinch of salt. Add this dry ingredients to the butter and egg mix and fold it in using a spatula and finally using hands to form a soft dough.
Divide the dough into two portions. Press one part into the prepared pan. Pour the chocolate filling on top of it. Sprinkle the remaining dough on top of the chocolate. Add the reserved 1/2 cup of walnuts too to the top. Bake for about 25-30 minutes until the top is golden in color. Cool completely and cut into about 36 squares and enjoy!