Saturday, August 13, 2011

Cornmeal Crumble Cherry Bars

From Heavenly Cookies

Vegetable cooking spray
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1-1/4 cups cornmeal
1-1/4 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground ginger
2 sticks plus 2 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1-1/2 cups cherry preserves
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/3 cup sliced almonds, lightly toasted

Heat oven to 350 degrees and place rack in center. Line a 13 x 9-inch baking pan with foil, allowing foil to hang over two sides; lightly coat foil with cooking spray.

In a large bowl, combine flour, cornmeal, sugar, baking powder, salt and ginger. Using a pastry blender or two knives, cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Reserve 2 cups crumb mixture.

Evenly spread remaining crumb mixture in prepared pan and press firmly to form a crust. Bake until golden, 15 to 18 minutes. Transfer pan to a wire rack and let cool completely.

In a small bowl, combine preserves and juice; spread over crust. Crumble reserved crumb mixture over top and sprinkle with nuts. Bake until light golden brown, about 25 minutes. Transfer pan to rack and let cool completely.

Holding foil, lift bars from pan and transfer to a work surface. Cut into bars.

Makes 42 bars

NOTE - Store in an airtight container at room temperature, in single layers, separated by waxed paper, up to 2 days.