Jam Bars

jam bars

Somehow, when Christmas was over, we found ourselves with 5 or 6 jars of jams and jellies. There is only so much jelly that one can eat on toast, so I’ve been looking for recipes that will make good use of the jams we have. Today I decided to make these jam bars – the recipe is an adaptation of the recipe for Raspberry Streusel Bars in the Joy of Cooking. I do love me the Joy of Cooking.

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup sugar
12 tablespoons cold butter
3 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 to 1.5 cups jam
Streusel topping (recipe below)

Generously grease an 8 x 8-inch baking pan.

Add flour, sugar and butter to food processor and pulse under the mixture has reached a course crumb. Mix together milk and vanilla extract. Slowly add the milk mixture and pulse until in begins to hold together. Add a little extra milk if it is still too dry (I had to.) Firmly press the mixture into the baking pan and refrigerate for 15 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Bake the chilled dough in the center of the oven for 12-15 minutes until barely firm in the center. Remove from the oven. Spread with jam and top with streusel topping. Return to oven for 25 to 30 minutes. Allow to cool on a cooling rack and cut into bars.

Streusel Topping
3/4 cup flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup nuts (original recipe called for sliced almonds, I used slivered, I think any nuts would do – just chop them if they are large)
1/2 cup rolled oats
1 egg
1 tablespoon milk

Whisk together flour, sugar, and cinnamon. Using your fingertips, cut the butter into flour mixture. Using a fork, stir in the nuts, then the oats. Beat together the egg and milk. Stir into flour mixture until streusel is moistened and forms small clumps. Add a small amount of additional milk if the mixture is too dry. Ready to top!

Jam Bars

Dinner for Two: Caramelized Tofu and Brussels Sprouts

tofu and brussels sprouts

Sometimes it’s hard to find recipes for just two people. Luckily I like leftovers a lot, but for those nights when I want to make a meal just for us, with nothing left over, I have a handful of recipes that I turn to. This is one of those – and a very popular meal in our house. It’s a recipe from Heidi Swanson of 101 Cookbooks with a few changes.

1 package extra firm tofu, cut into thin 1-inch segments, pressed to remove excess water
2 medium cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup pecans, chopped
1 tablespoon light brown sugar
1 (10 oz) container of brussels sprout, very thinly sliced in the food processor
olive oil

Heat a splash of olive oil in a non-stick skillet over medium heat; add tofu. Cook until slightly golden, 2-3 minutes per side. Add garlic and pecans, and saute for another minute. Stir in sugar and cook for a few more minutes.

Remove tofu/pecan mixture from the pan. Add a little more oil to pan. Stir in shredded brussels sprouts. Add pinch salt, stir. Cook for 4-5 minutes, stirring frequently, until sprouts begin to turn golden (and smell sort of like popcorn.

Split brussels sprouts into two bowls. Top with tofu mixture. Enjoy!

Dinner for Two: Caramelized Tofu and Brussels Sprouts