The kids & ( were delighted to have Granddaddy drop by for an impromptu visit this morning- we had just taken a walk and were in the throws of bath time when he popped his head in to receive squeals of joy!
In return for stopping by, I loaded Granddaddy up with a coffee & apricot square while he snuggled with Livy to watch I Love Lucy episode, 'The Camping Trip'- Livy loves to mimic Lucy as she says "Say aaahhh" when hooking fish together on a string! Jonah opted for a nap:)
So while listening to Lucy & Livy "Wah wah, wah wah" while hunting for ducks, Granddaddy happily munched away and gave his enthusiastic thumbs up for the apricot bars. These apricot squares are seriously good and since they use dried apricots vs fresh, they can be made during 'any season':)
This recipe was on my list of things to bake this summer & it's definitely a keeper. A bonus to this recipe is that it doesn't require a mixer, just your handy dandy food processor which then promptly goes in your handy dandy dishwasher for easy clean up:)
(I'm afraid the above bar had already been nibbled by the time I remembered to take a pic!)
All Season Apricot Bars
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/4 cup sliced almonds, + 1/2 cup
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar, + 1Tbsp
1/2 tsp salt
12 Tbsp unsalted butter, cut into 12 pieces and softened
1 lb dried apricots
1 cup water
1/2 cup apricot jam
1/2 tsp grated fresh lemon zest
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
1) Adjust oven rack to middle and preheat to 375 degrees. Line a 9x13 baking pan with aluminum foil sling and grease.
2) FOR THE CRUST: Process the flour, 1 1/4 cups almonds, granulated sugar, 1/3 cup brown sugar & salt in food processor until combines, approx 5 secs. Add the butter and pulse until it resembles coarse meal with a few pea sized pieces of butter, about 20 pulses.
3) Reserve 1/2 cup flour mixture for the topping. Sprinkle remaining flour mixture in bottom of prepared pan and press into an even layer with the bottom of a measuring cup. Bake the crust until golden brown, about 15 mins.
4) While the crust bakes, mix remaining the 1 Tbsp of brown sugar and 1/2 cup of almonds with reserved flour mixture in small bowl and pinch to form clumps of streusel.
5) FOR THE FILLING: Pulse the apricots, water and jam in food processor until roughly 1/4 inch chunks. Cook the apricot mixture in a large non stick skillet over high heat until it is thickened and jam-like, about 10 minutes. Off the heat, stir in the lemon zest, lemon juice and a pinch of salt.
6) Spread the cooked apricot mixture evenly over the hot crust, then sprinkle with the streusel topping and remaining 1/2 cup almonds. Bake until the almonds are golden brown, about 20 mins, rotating the halfway through baking.
7) Let the bars cool completely in the pan, set on a wire rack, about 2 hrs. Remove the bars using the foil sling and cut into 24 squares.