March 1, 2011 P.B. and Jaded
Sitting in my kitchen last night, seeking inspiration for my latest post, I leafed through my mom’s stack of this month’s magazines: Bon Appetit, Food and Wine, Saveur, the list goes on. While doing so, I watched my younger sisters pack their lunches, each complaining that we didn’t have “good food” at our house. I don’t know about you, but when I was in school, daily lunches meant rubbery hot dogs and mystery meat loaf; the school cafeteria was a stranger to all things organic and local. Today, sushi lunch is expected, and vitamin waters have replaced juicy juice. In a world where nutterbutters just don’t cut it anymore, I bring you Bon Appetit’s Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars. These will surely please even the most P.B. and Jaded of taste testers.
Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars – Bon Appetit, March 2011
- Nonstick vegetable oil spray
- 1 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 cup smooth peanut butter
- 3/4 cup (packed) golden brown sugar
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 1 large egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3/4 cup grape jelly or other jelly or jam
- 2/3 cup coarsely chopped salted dry-roasted peanuts
Preheat oven to 350°F. Line 8x8x2-inch metal baking pan with heavy-duty foil, leaving 2-inch overhang around edges and pressing firmly into corners and up sides of pan. Coat foil with nonstick spray. Whisk flour, baking powder, and 1/4 teaspoon salt in small bowl. Using electric mixer, beat peanut butter, sugar, and butter in large bowl until smooth. Add egg and vanilla; beat on low speed until smooth. Add flour mixture; beat on low speed just to blend. Transfer half of dough to prepared pan (about scant 1 1/2 cups). Place remaining dough in freezer for 10 minutes. Using fingertips, press dough evenly onto bottom of pan. Spread jelly over in even layer. Remove dough from freezer; using fingertips, break into grape-size pieces and scatter over jelly layer. Sprinkle chopped nuts over.
Bake bars until top is golden brown, about 30 minutes. Cool bars completely in pan on rack.
Using foil overhang as aid, lift bars from pan. Gently peel foil from edges. Cut into 16 squares. DO AHEAD Can be made 3 days ahead. Store airtight at room temperature.