The weather has dipped to a ridiculous 30-something degrees here in Boston, and since our thermometer is wonky, I'm usually hobo-ing it up in front of my stove or oven to keep my fingers from going numb.
Of course, I can't stand in front of an empty oven, so I might as well bake something. And since I had a jar of raspberry jam leftover from the baked sufganiyot, I figured that something might as well be these raspberry crumb bars from Martha's Baking Handbook.
These raspberry crumb bars taste -- and look -- kind of like a summer day: a layer of tart jam (or chocolate, caramel, or lemon curd -- your imagination's the limit) sandwiched between a layer of crispy shortbread and a melt-in-your-mouth shortbread crumble. It's like a decadent fruit cobbler in bar form.
They require a little bit of effort, in that you have to cut the butter into the dough mixture by hand using a pastry blender, but I find that kind of work very satisfying. Plus you get a good upper-body work out, which absolves you from any guilt you might feel eating a whole platter of these bars. Of course, if you're feeling lazy, no one will know if you use a food processor.
Recipe adapted from Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook. My changes are in italics.
- 3 sticks (1 1/2 cups) unsalted butter, room temperature, cut into pieces, plus more for pan
- 2 1/4 cups (11 ounces) blanched almonds, very finely ground (or sub with almond flour)
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 1/4 cups sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 3/4 cups raspberry, apricot or strawberry jam