Thursday, August 7, 2014

Chewy Toffee Blondies

These bars started with an impulse buy at the grocery store.  I was waiting in line to check out, and as I was standing there something caught my eye.  Heath candy bars were buy three, get two free!  If that's not a deal then I don't know what is.  Naturally, I grabbed five candy bars and tossed them into the shopping cart.  I decided that I needed to bake something with the candy bars, and these blondies seemed like the perfect vehicle for the job.  I chopped the candy quite coarsely, which paid off by leaving large in-tact chunks in the final product.  If you chop the candy too finely it may just melt into the bars and you will lose that classic toffee crunch.  Browning the butter imparts a rich, nutty flavor, but if you don't want to spend the time to do this, you can simply melt the butter and proceed.  These bars are sure to please any toffee lover!

Adapted from Smitten Kitchen

8 ounces (1 stick) butter, browned
1 cup (7 3/4 ounces) brown sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (4 3/8 ounces) all-purpose flour
1 cup coarsely chopped Heath Bars (about 4 - 1.4 ounce bars)

1. Coat an 8 x 8 pan with non-stick spray or line with parchment paper. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Melt 1/2 cup butter in a 2-quart heavy saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring constantly and watching closely, until butter just begins to turn golden brown (about 6-8 minutes). Immediately remove from heat.

3. In a large bowl, mix browned butter and brown sugar until smooth. Beat in egg, then add vanilla extract. Stir in salt and flour until just combined. Add the chopped candy bars and stir until just incorporated.

4. Pour and spread batter into prepared pan. Bake 20-25 minutes or until set in the middle, taking caution not to overbake. Cool on a rack before cutting into bars.

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