Friday, February 21, 2014

Cherry Bars

What is a Valentines Day dinner with out some sweet treats to finish off the meal? This dessert is a combinations between cherry pie and sugar cookies and makes a huge pan full of bars so you can really serve a crowd with this recipe! Cherry and almond is a delicious flavor combo, and since it is a beautiful red and white dessert I thought it would be a perfect choice for our Valentine's Day Sweetheart Dinner

Cherry Bars (prep time 20 min./ cook time 30 min)
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups sugar
1 tsp. salt
4 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. almond extract
1/4 tsp. almond extract
3 cups all purpose flour
2 cans (21 oz.) cherry pie filling

1 cup confectioners sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1/2 tsp. almond
2 to 3 TBS. milk

Directions:  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  In a large bowl, cream butter, sugar and salt until light and fluffy. Add eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.  Beat in flavor extracts and gradually add flour, blend well.  Spread 3 cups of the batter into a well greased or sprayed 15 x 10 x 1 inch baking pan. Spread with pie filling.  Drop remaining batter by teaspoonfuls over filling.  Bake 30-35 minutes or until golden brown (it actually took about 45 minutes in the baking dish I used.  Cool completely in pan on a wire rack.  In small bowl combine confectioners sugar, vanilla, and almond flavorings with 2 to 3 Tbs. milk (until desired consistency).  Drizzle glazed over bars and let glaze dry before cutting into bars.  Sit back and let the compliments roll in ;)!

Cream butter, sugar, and salt until light and fluffy

Add eggs one at a time until well blended

Add almond flavoring

Add vanilla flavoring

Gradually mix in flour

Mix until you have a soft sugar cookie like dough

Add 3 cups of the dough mixture to a sprayed 15 x 10 x 1 inch pan 
(I used a deeper one)

Spread mixture smooth

Spread 2 cans cherry pie filling on top of dough

Drop spoonfuls of the rest of the dough on top of the cherry pie filling

Bake in a 350 degree oven until golden brown for about 45 minutes

When cool mix powdered sugar, milk and flavoring to make icing

Stir until smooth

Drizzle on top of of cherry bars