Wednesday, July 16, 2008
NO-BAKE CHOCOLATE AND PEANUT BUTTER OATMEAL BARS
Could there be a more perfect time for a no-bake treat? In this month's Martha Stewart magazine, the cookie of the month looked so incredibly delicious, I immediately tore the page out to add to my collection. In the past, I've had trouble with some of Martha's cookie recipes, most notably her crystallized ginger cookie. I'm pleased to say that this cookie turned out just as photogenic--and more importantly--yummy as the article described it. To quote, "With a candy-bar-inspired top and a crumbly cookie base, each of these rich squares packs a double dose of that perfect pairing: chocolate and peanut butter." Martha, this is truly a good thing.
Cookie of the Month - 24 squares
vegetable oil cooking spray
9 oz package of chocolate wafers, finely ground (2 cups)
1 1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1 1/4 cups confectioner's sugar
1/4 tsp coarse salt
5 oz unsalted butter (1 stick plus 2 tbs)
1 cup chunky peanut butter
1/4 cup plus 3 tbs smooth peanut butter
10 oz semisweet chocolate, melted (I used milk chocolate)
1 1/2 oz milk chocolate, melted (I used semisweet chocolate)
Coat a 9 X 13 inch baking dish with cooking spray, then line with parchment, leaving a 2 inch overhag on the 2 long sides.
In a large bowl, combine the ground wafers with the oats, sugar, and salt.
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat, then add all of the chunky peanut butter and 3/4 cup of the smooth peanut butter, whisking until well combined.
Add this peanut butter mixture to the dry ingredients, stirring until combined.
Transfer the mixture to the baking dish and use the back of a measuring cup or an offset spatula to press the mixture firmly into the pan in an even layer. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Melt the 10 oz of chocolate and pour over the chilled mixture, using an offset spatula to spread it into a thin layer that covers the entire surface. Refrigerate 15 minutes.
Heat the remaining 3 tbs smooth peanut butter in a small saucepan until runny, then drizzle over chilled chocolate.
Melt the 1 1/2 oz of chocolate and drizzle over all. Refrigerate until hardenend.
Use the parchment to lift out the chilled block of bars. Run a sharp knife under hot water, then dry thoroughly. Cut into 24 squares, wiping blade between cuts. Let bars stand at room temperature for 10 minutes before serving. May be refrigerated for up to 1 week or frozen up to 1 month.
Now, let me explain that mine will look a bit different because I was talking on the phone as I made the toppings and inadvertently mixed up the milk and semi sweet chocolate. I also mixed the 3 tbs smooth peanut butter with the milk chocolate so I'm missing one drizzle. Thank goodness these weren't critical steps, but I would have preferred a semisweet frosting. Serves me right for trying to walk and chew gum.