Thursday, August 4, 2011

Apricot Blondies

These were a sweet surprise.  They were so simple to make and unassuming that I wasn't expecting them to be so delicious.  I didn't plan on baking but I was invited to crash a baby shower (don't ask) and Cindy, who invited me, asked if I had any cookies in the freezer since the mom-to-be loves my treats and the event was pot luck.  I didn't have anything on hand, but never one to disappoint, I took a quick spin through my recipes, looking for something quick and fruity.  Mom-to-be fell in love with the Cranberry Apricot Bars, so I wanted something with a similar impact.  These are sweet and nutty, soft and chewy, a definite win.  Even Dave who doesn't care for the Cranberry Apricot Bars thought these were good.  And Cindy and the mom-to-be raved over these.

This recipe comes from the Christmas Cookies cookbook where I found the Cinnamon Bars and Peanut Butter Brownies.  It's simple and delicious, but unfortunately I didn't have all the ingredients.  The recipe calls for pecans but I ran out last week when I made the Banana Coffee Cake.  Instead I substituted almonds and the match was perfect.  I also added a light powdered sugar glaze.  The nuts and apricots provide a great flavor and the soft texture of the bar make this a wonderful treat.  These would also be great for brunch or a dessert.

Apricot Blondies

1/2 cup shortening
1 cup brown sugar, packed
2 eggs
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder (not baking soda which is what I have shown in the picture)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup dried apricots, chopped
1/2 cup almonds, chopped

In a stand mixer, cream shortening and add sugar, beating well and scraping sides of bowl as necessary.  Add eggs, beating after each addition.  Stir in vanilla.

In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder and salt.

Again, baking powder not baking soda.  If I paid attention, I'd be dangerous.

Switching to the paddle attachment on the stand mixer, gradually add flour mixture to shortening mixture, mixing well until combined.  Fold in apricots and almonds.

Press mixture into a greases 9 x 13 inch pan (I eventually used my hands to press the dough into the corners).  Bake at 350 degrees F for 18-20 minutes.

Remove from oven and cool completely on a wire rack.


1/3 cup powdered sugar
1-2 Tablespoons vanilla almond milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

In a small bowl whisk together all ingredients until a thin glaze is achieved.  If you prefer it thicker, add more powdered sugar.  If you prefer it thinner, add more almond milk.

Drizzle glaze over bars.  Allow glaze to set (about 1 hour) then cut into bars.

Makes 24 bars.

Happy Baking,
The Cookie Princess

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1 comment:

  1. Both hubby and I love blondies and adding the dried apricots is inspired.