Shirley's Recipes

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Name: Cranberry Streusel Bars
Key Ingredient: cranberries
Preparation: cook; combine; bake
Cuisine: American
Source: The Oregonian FOODday/20 November 2007
Food Group: cookies
Meals: lunch, dinner, snack
Courses: dessert
Temperature: room
Effort: easy
Prep. Time: :20
Elapsed Time: 1:10
Occasion: Thanksgiving
Servings: 12

Cranberry filling:
1 12-ounce bag fresh or frozen cranberries (3-1/2 cups)
3/4 cup water
1 cup granulated sugar
Pinch salt
1/4 teaspoon ground mace

Bars:
1 cup firmly packed brown sugar
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1-1/2 cups old-fashioned (not instant) oatmeal, uncooked
1/2 cup chopped walnuts, optional

To make filling: In a medium saucepan, combine the cranberries (no need to thaw berries if they're frozen), the water and sugar. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture thickens and the cranberries pop, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the salt and mace (Mixture will thicken as it cools). Make 3 cups.

To make bars: Preheat oven to 375F. Grease an 11 x 7 x 2-inch pan and set aside. In a large bowl, combine the brown sugar, flour, baking soda, salt and cinnamon. Add the butter and, using your fingers, work together until no small lumps remain. Add the oatmeal.
Press and flatten half of the mixture into the prepared pan to form a crust. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove the crust from the oven and, while warm, spread on top of it all of the cranberry filling. Add the nuts, if using, to the remaining mixture for streusel and sprinkle it evenly over filling. Return to the oven and bake 25 minutes, until streusel topping is lightly browned. Cool pan on rack and cut into bars. Store in a covered container for up to a week or freeze for up to a month. Makes 24 (1-7/8 x 1-3/4-inch) bars


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