Apricot Macadamia Nut Cookie Bars

Makes approximately 30 bars

CRUST:

  • 1-1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup, plus 2 tbsp. butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup vegetable shortening
  • 1/4 tsp. cardamom powder (optional)
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

In a large bowl, combine flour and sugar.  Using a pastry blender or fork cut in butter and shortening.  Once everything is combined, pat crust onto the bottom of an ungreased pan (I use a 1/4 sheet).  Poke holes all over the dough using a fork--this will keep the crust from bubbling up.

Bake until the cookie crust begins to lightly brown--about 17 minutes.

TOPPING:
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup apricot preserves
  • 1 tablespoon butter, softened
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 c. macadamia nuts--cut into small chunks (or whichever nut you prefer, almonds are also a great choice!)

In a large bowl (I use the same one I used for making the crust), whisk together egg, sugar, and preserves.  Add butter and vanilla and continue whisking until everything is combined.  Spread the mixture over the hot cookie crust and sprinkle with macadamia nuts.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 20 minutes--until the topping is set but not browned or dry.  Allow to cool and sprinkle with powdered sugar.  Cut bars into squares (a plastic knife works best!).

original recipe/photos can be found @ http://myfancypantry.com/2012/05/04/apricot-bars/

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