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Saturday, January 14, 2012

With a Cherry On Top

If you like it than you better put a cherry on it. If you like it than you better put a cherry on it. Uh, oh, oh, oh, oh...whatever, Beyonce. Anyway, made some Cherry Almond Bars the other day. I don't really like cherry anything much. I only like fresh cherries and even then I really don't like eating them because my fingers always get stained. I'm a little strange. I can't help it. My brain won't stop thinking of the what if's in life. Please, please make it stop.

Back to the cherries. They have never been my favorite thing, so in my ongoing quest to lose weight, I thought to myself, "Hmmm, if I make these cherry bar things, I won't eat too many because I don't like cherries." Eureka, I have found my diet secret. Make stuff that taste good to other people, but not to you. Voila, skinnyville here I come.

They make a huge 15x10 tray full so there was a lot. I took some to a party, some to the babysitter, and some to work. I was asked for the recipe a couple of times and today a guy from work said, "Oh, those were good. I only got to have one." I told him I would make more. I had only one, too. Cherries...remember...not my thing. Maybe it has to do with cherry being the only flavor of medicine when I was a kid. Here's a close up of them.

This is what they look like when they are out of the oven, cooled, and drizzled with the glaze.

Anyway, here's the recipe and a few tips. They are good. The middle section of mine was a little mushy. See.

I don't think there was enough batter on the bottom there and those darn cherries took over. They were not good enough to serve from this area. It was like a gory scene of a cherry homicide there. I am going to try these again and use a little less cherry filling. The almond extract added a nice flavor that complemented the cherries well.

Cherry Bars
from Taste of Home Baking Classics page 370 recipe from Jane Kamp of Grand Rapids, MI.

1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
4 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. almond extract
3 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
2 cans (21 oz) cherry pie filling

1 cup powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. almond extract
2-3 Tblsp. milk

In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in the extracts. Combine flour and salt; gradually add to the creamed mixture just until combined.

Spread 3 cups batter into a greased 15x10x1 inch baking pan. Spread with pie filling. Drop the remaining batter by teaspoonfuls over filling.

Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack. Combine glaze ingredients; drizzle over top. Cut into bars. Yield: 5 dozen.

*5 dozen is an exaggeration. Unless they cut them super small.

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