Happy Tuesday! Hope everyone is doing great. I can’t believe that we’ll be celebrating Christmas in less than two weeks. I haven’t figured out the Christmas menu yet, but I’ll be baking a few things for sure.
One of my favorite nuts is walnuts, they go so well with everything. I add them to cookies, cakes, brownies, cheese boards, oatmeal, etc. This time I decided to make some kind of blondies/bars using walnuts in 3 forms: ground walnuts, chopped walnuts and walnuts to decorate. Also, I’m using maple syrup which I think works perfect with these nuts. The result of this combination is just heaven! These bars are perfect for any time of the day or you can make them for your Christmas gatherings too.
For me, the best brand of nuts is Diamond. They offer fresh and good quality nuts. You can find them at any grocery store. Here is their website so you can learn more about them.
Let’s start with the recipe!
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cooled
1 cup light brown sugar
1 large egg, room temperature
1 cup walnuts. You will toast them and grind them in a food processor.
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup walnuts, chopped
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
walnuts to decorate
1.- Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease a 8×8 inch pan and line it with parchment paper (bottom and sides). Set aside.
2.- Place the toasted walnuts (1 cup) in a food processor and pulse until coarsely ground. Set aside. Note: The walnuts have to cool off completely before you put them in the food processor.
3.- In a bowl of a stand up mixer, mix melted butter and brown sugar for about 2 minutes. Add the maple syrup, egg and vanilla. Mix for 2 more minutes until all is well combined.
4.- Add the ground walnuts, flour, salt and cinnamon until just combined. With a spatula fold in the chopped walnuts (3/4 cup). Pour batter into the prepared pan and spread evenly. Top with 9 halves. You can use more walnuts if you want to.
5.- Bake for about 35 minutes or until you insert a toothpick in the middle it will come out clean. The top will look glossy and the edges will have a golden color.
6.- Let it cool completely in the pan and then cut!