My love for all things culinary was hatched at a young age when I discovered how to bake. Cookies, cakes, brownies, lemon squares, you name it. As I got older (and left the busom of my fantastic cook of a mother), I began to cook more often. Most recently, my baking has waned most severely because Manfriend never grew a sweet tooth and no one needs me to eat a whole pie.
So, when I saw a request for bakers for the Food Blogger Bake Sale this Saturday, I jumped at the chance to get back to my sugary roots. As soon as the weather gets cold (or really as soon as it’s no longer August) I start dreaming about pumpkin scones, pumpkin pie, pumpkin anyyyyything. These little joys popped up on my Google Reader a couple times and I had been waiting for an excuse to try them out. Charity and culinary adventure: a match made in heaven.
- 1-1/3 cups flour
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar, divided
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) cold butter or margarine
- 1 cup old-fashioned or quick-cooking oats, uncooked
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
- 1 pkg. (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
- 3 eggs
- 1 can (15 oz.) pumpkin
- 1 Tbsp. pumpkin pie spice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons bourbon (optional)
- a handful of butterscotch or chocolate chips for sprinkling on top (optional)
HEAT oven to 350°F. Line 13×9-inch pan with foil, with ends of foil extending over sides; grease foil. Mix flour, 1/4 granulated sugar and brown sugar in medium bowl; cut in butter with pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in oats and nuts.
RESERVE 1 cup oat mixture; press remaining onto bottom of prepared pan.
Bake 15 min.
Beat cream cheese, remaining sugar, eggs, vanilla, bourbon, pumpkin and spice with mixer until well blended.
Pour over crust; sprinkle with reserved crumb mixture and a handful of butterscotch or chocolate chips (if desired).
BAKE 25 min.; cool 10 min. Use foil to transfer dessert from pan to wire rack; cool completely.
So, after a couple hours of cooling, my pan of bars were acting more like jello than upstanding bar cookies. I popped em in the fridge overnight, and when I went to slice ’em this morning, they were perfect! The crust was crusty! Magic! I cut out a piece to bring to the boss lady (1. because she hearts when i bake and 2. i owed her big time for taking the fall for a minor oversight of mine yesterday) and cut a little sliver for myself.
“Mmm…manfriend do you want to try a bite?”
“It’s pie? Can I have some later?”
“It’s 8:30 in the morning, I don’t want pie for breakfast. You don’t have pie for breakfast!”
[incredulous disbelief, indicated by a deep lounge-singer voice] “But whyyyyy not?”
ps–I will be attempting a second batch of these tonight, sans nut, also for the bake sale. might try some dark chocolate chunks on top with the butterscotch chips. things could get a little crazy.