Sunday, January 17, 2010

Raspberry Jam Filled Almond Bars

It has been said that a picture speaks a thousand words, but this picture conjures only two- "oohhhh god!" I would love to take credit for these delicious raspberry filled almond bars, but alas, I cannot. My wife began baking a few months ago. In her words, "I felt that I had to contribute in the kitchen and you won't let me cook." This is true to some extent, I am a little territorial, and my kitchen is my home. I remain, however, extremely open to her newly found love for confections. Instead of my writing the recipe of a dish that I have never cooked, I will hand over the reigns to my lovely wife, Christa.

Sweet! I am excited to share this recipe with your blog readers - although there was a time when I considered keeping it "Top Secret". I figured at very least it would help me secure more dinner and party invitations from our friends and family simply by keeping their hope alive that I might bring these bars along. But, alas, I have come to terms with the fact that they are so good that it is unfair to keep them to myself and so, I will share the recipe with the world.

Decadent Raspberry Almond Bars

1 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 cup confectioners sugar
1/2 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened

3/4 cup almond paste, diced (4 oz)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
2 tbsp unsalted butter, softened
Pinch salt
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp almond extract
2 tbsp all-purpose flour
1/2 cup (about ½ regular sized jar) raspberry jam
1/2 cup sliced almonds (just eyeball the amount of almonds. I'm pretty sure I used more than 1/2 cup)

Preheat oven to 350 Degrees. Grease a 9-inch square metal cake pan (a buttered non-stick pan worked great) or line with parchment paper to extend 1 inch above rim on 2 sides; set aside. You can use a bigger pan and just double the recipe as well. This recipe isn't too finicky.

Step 1 - Crust: In bowl, whisk flour with icing sugar; using a fork, blend in butter until it creates fine crumbs. Press mixture by hand into bottom of prepared pan to evenly cover the bottom surface. Bake in the center of 350°F oven until pale golden, 16 minutes. Let cool on rack. (a larger batch/pan may need just a little longer – maybe 17 minutes)

Step 2 - Filling: In bowl, beat almond paste, sugar, butter and salt until combined. Beat in egg, vanilla and almond extract until smooth. Mix in flour; set aside.

Spread raspberry jam over base; spoon filling over jam. Drop large spoonfuls evenly spaced across the top and use a rubber spatula to just prod the filling into the empty spots so that the surface of the jam is completely covered with almond filling. Work slowly to avoid mixing the jam up into the almond filling). Cover evenly with sliced almonds.

Step 3 - Bake in center of 350°F oven until light golden and filling is just firm to the touch, about 30 minutes (Larger Pan may need a little bit longer – no more than a couple extra minutes though).

Step 4 - Let cool in the pan on a cooling rack rack. Make sure you let the bars cool as completely as possible before cutting. Once cool, run a knife around the edges of the pan to loosen the filling from the sides. You can then cut them right in the pan, or, turn the entire pan out onto a large cutting board and cut them upside down. You may want to put them in the fridge to let them firm up before slicing Use a sharp knife to cut and you may want to run knife under hot water or wipe with a damp cloth in between cuts to make the process a little bit easier.

Good luck, and let us know how your bars turn out!


  1. Yum with a double yum and glass of milk.....

  2. Dear blogger u mention half cup + 2 sticks of butter so its 8 oz butter?????