I've been in a funk lately and haven't been cooking or baking. I'm not really sure why. I haven't had much of an appetite either and I think that's probably why the lack of interest in being in the kitchen. Thank goodness for Mr. H and his ability to prepare a meal or we would have starved this past week. (Thanks babe!) Last week, I went to visit my friend, Maranda of Jolts and Jollies. We baked together while her son and Hayden "played" together. We pretended that we were getting the kids together for a playdate, but really is was so we could play in the kitchen with sugar and flour!
We baked from the new cookbook, Back In The Day Bakery Cookbook from Cheryl and Griffith Day. If you haven't checked out this book yet, put it on your list because there was not one thing in there that I didn't want to make. It's a great cookbook- the pictures are bright and clear and the recipes themselves are not overly complicated. I chose to make Drunk Blondies that were cram packed with toasted coconut, chocolate chips and pecans but they were so perfectly balanced in flavor that not one ingredient stood out over the other.
These blondies were so buttery and chewy and delicious. My absolute favorite part was the edges though- oh my goodness, they're good! There's also a healthy dose of Bourbon in these too, hence the name, Drunk Blondies, but the alcohol taste was subtle. If you're not a fan of baking with spirits, simply leave it out, but I thought it was a nice addition. Maranda chose to make Lemon Pie Bars that were perfectly tart and sweet and had a melt in your mouth crust. Both recipes were winners! Are you interested in winning a copy of Back In The Day Bakery Cookbook? Scroll down to the end of this post to see how!
Drunk Blondies from Back In The Day Bakery Cookbook
- 2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted
- 2 cups packed light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs, at room temperature
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 2 Tablespoons bourbon
- 1/4 cup chopped pecans
- 1/2 cup sweetened flaked coconut, toasted
- 1/4 cup mini semisweet chocolate chips
Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9x13x2-inch baking pan and line with parchment, allowing the ends of the paper to hang over two opposite edges of the pan.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt; set aside.
Put the butter and brown sugar in a large mixing bowl and stir with a spoon until smooth. Add the eggs, vanilla and bourbon, and mix until thoroughly combined. Stir in the flour mixture, followed by the pecans, coconut, and chocolate chips.
Pour the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top with an offset spatula. Bake for 20-25 minutes, until the top is golden brown. Remove the pan from the oven and let cool completely on a wire rack. Cut the blondies into bars. The blondies will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.
TIP: The easiest way to toast coconut is in the oven. Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Spread the coconut in a baking pan and bake for 5-8 minutes, tossing every couple of minutes with a heat-resistant spoon to ensure even browning. Keep a close eye on the coconut, because it can burn easily.
For the recipe for Lemon Pie Bars and for a chance to win your very own copy of Back In The Day Bakery Cookbook please visit my friend Maranda at Jolts and Jollies. Tell her your most memorable back in the day baking memory and this book could be yours! While you're there, kick up your feet and stay awhile. Happy Baking!