Thursday, February 9, 2012

Cherry On Top


A couple months ago I did a review for a cookbook called Sugar, Sugar. In my review, I mentioned that I had a list of recipes that I wanted to make from it. Well, this is one of them. The initial appeal to the recipe was because they were so strikingly red and beautiful. Can bars really be beautiful? I think so. The other part was that it used up a can of cherry pie filling that I had hiding in the back of my pantry.

I don't often make recipes that are made in a half-sheet pan, because there are only two of us and usually the recipe yields too much for us to eat. But I made these to take over to my in-laws for dinner. I left several bars for them, we ate several, then a couple days later I took the remaining bars to my mom's for dinner. To say that my little brother loved them was an understatement. He ate 6 of them! First he started off with one, then another, then another....you get the idea. I think he would have polished off the entire plate, but he was nice enough to leave some for my mom to enjoy as well. Had she given him the okay, he would have gladly eaten those too.

I thought these bars were going to be like bar cookies, but they really weren't. They were a cross between a cookie and a cake. Chewy and firm, but soft, gooey and moist all at the same time. My favorite part was the little buttery dumplings of dough that puffed up on the top of the glossy cherries. We ate these over the course of 4 days and as they aged, they got softer and gooier. I have plans to make these again for my brother so he can eat til his heart's content. He's young, tall and thin- he can stand to gain a few pounds :-).

Cherry Slices from Sugar, Sugar
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  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup butter, at room temperature
  • 1 3/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
  • 4 larges eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract, optional (my addition)
  • 1 (21-ounce) can cherry pie filling
  • 1/4 cup powdered sugar, for dusting
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease an 11x17-inch rimmed baking sheet (or use non-stick cooking spray). Set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. Set aside. Place the butter and both sugars in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat on medium speed until creamy. Add the eggs, one at a time, and mix on low speed until well blended. Add the vanilla and almond extract, if using. Add the flour mixture, a little at a time, and beat until smooth. Reserve 1 cup of the batter.
Spread the remaining batter in the baking sheet. Spoon the cherry pie filling over the top. Drop the reserved cup of batter by teaspoonfuls over the pie filling. It should look uneven. When baked, the batter on the bottom rises and creates reservoirs of cherry filling.
Bake for 30-35 minutes, until the batter begins to turn golden. Remove from the oven and let cool completely. Dust with powdered sugar. Cut into 2-inch squares.

24 comments:

jbr said...

We've had this recipe in our family for years, we call it cherry swirl. It is delicious and always a crowd pleasure. Your pictures look great.

Coleen said...

What a great recipe to have for feeding a crowd!!!

Meghan said...

WoW! This looks scrumptious!

Becca said...

Wow, I love that cherry's color. It's so vibrant and, and, and, RED! I mean wow. I can't get over that :P

Dawnye7 said...

I'm with everyone else, you took great photos. It's so shiny and the cherries look yummy. I want it for breakfast.

A Feast for the Eyes said...

Just in time for Valentine's Day, a beautiful red dessert. I can see why your brother ate one after another. I probably would want to, as well.

From the Kitchen said...

You had me at "buttery little dumplings"!!

Wishing you a happy Valentine's Day with your main "men". Give the little one a hug from me.

Best,
Bonnie

Abby said...

You're right! They're gorgeous. I may make these for my co-workers. The texture description sounds amazing.

Cara @ The Boys Made Me Do It said...

What a cool recipe! I love recipes like this!

Danelle said...

My husband loves cherry desserts. I can't wait to make this for him!

cybil said...

Looks delicious!!

Deborah Anne said...

Looks very yummy! And you make it seem so easy! But, you don't fool me! ;)

Janice said...

These were such a hit that family members are already making "The Deal". They bring the main ingred. & I make the dessert for them. Thank You!

Miss Apple said...

Wow! It looks delicious!! I loved the colors!!

thats what we said said...

These are totally beautiful!

Avril said...

Hooray for cherries!!! Hooray for Sugar, Sugar! - after reading your recent post with that cookbook featured as a giveaway I couldn't help myself and went right on over to amazon.com to purchase it for myself. LOVE it! And this recipe is definitely on my list of 'must makes' from that treasure of a cookbook.

The Captain's Daughter said...

Okay... I just made the same recipe. Why does yours look so much better!? Honestly, yours is beautiful!

Maranda said...

These ARE really pretty! But I don't like cherries. I wonder if it would work with strawberry pie filling. ;-)

TIffany said...

I made these yesterday for my FIL's birthday meal. He ALWAYS has cherry pie AND chocolate cake, but I was in charge this year, & can't stand making the same thing over & over. I added a bag of mini chocolate chips to the "cookie dough", and I really liked the chocolate cherry combo! Tho I should have baked them longer, even at 40 minutes(browned edges), it was a bit doughy. I LOVE the cherries, I would have loved MORE cheeries, I may try making then again with 1 1/2cans of filling! ~T~

ramya said...

Tried it out and got a cake instead of a bar!But t'was so yum and pretty that i've put it on my blog...I'm making them again,this time in a proper pan and hopefully they'll come out as perfect as yours!Thanks for sharing,Monica...stay blessed always!

Ashley's Cooking Adventures said...

These pictures make me so homesick, my Mom makes something exactly like this! I think I'm gong to have to request she make it for me when she visits.

Anonymous said...

Is this a recipe that you could make the night before and serve the next day @ lunch?

Marjorie said...

This looks wonderful and brings back the image that my mother use to make this when I was growing up. I have a web site in her memory but have not found this recipe in her collection yet. I will have to ask one of my sisters maybe they have it. Your recipes are great and pictures beautiful. www.smalltownkitchen.com

Patricia Scarpin said...

I have had this cake on my wish list for quite a while now, not sure if I should buy it or not. Now I have decided - I'm purchasing it today! These bars look decadently delicious, I wish I could grab one from the screen!

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