09 June 2014

Blackberry rhubarb streusel bars

Ah the streusal bar.  Jammy fruit, one hand-mixed dough, part to pat in the pan, part to crumble atop. I think I'll be on a kick here with these mixing up the fruit and spice via the season. Everybody likes a streusal bar. Am I wrong about that? I mean, when you decide to throw these in the oven the exact hour before you need to leave the house, place the pan on the rack to cool, scurry out, and come home a few hours later to ready-to-cut bars, you will not say no. And when your significant other walks in, happily accepting a pre-dinner snack (because you are not that organized to have dinner on the table already, are you?), they will thank you, too. People like things they can pick up with their hand. People like portability. They like things that are sandwich shaped. And they like bars. 

At this point, you're probably aware, there are lots of ways to make a streusel bar. There's the nuts and rolled oats topped one, the melted butter based one, the blind baked bottom one, etc. This one is none of those things. It's less fussy, and has been passed around the web, which I'm glad for, because there's nothing more annoying than a lone, comment-less recipe. So today, I add to the chorus, bringing notes of blackberry and rhubarb, lemon and ginger and deepened with a little oat flour and brown sugar (thanks, TartTart). These are a great little afternoon treat and make a breakfast, too. Take a few out of the fridge to temper while you dress and enjoy with tea or coffee. Alongside an egg and fruit for some balance of course...

Update: straight up strawberries are also delicious as the fruit in this.

Blackberry rhubarb streusel bars
Adapted from Tart + Smitten
Makes a 9 x 9 inch pan

scant 1/4 cup granulated sugar
scant 1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 1/2 cup unbleached all-purpose flour (can swap in 1/2 cup oat or other flour)
Zest of 1/2 lemon
1/8 tsp ground ginger or spice
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 cup cold unsalted butter (4 ounces)
1/2 an egg whisked

1 T  lemon juice
~1/4 tsp fine grated fresh ginger or 1/4 tsp ground ginger or other spice
2 cups fresh berries + rhubarb (chopped 1/4 inch)
scant 2 T granulated sugar
scant 2 T brown sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch

-Oven to 375 degrees F. Grease 9×9 inch pan.
-In a medium bowl, stir together 1 cup sugar, 3 cups flour, and baking powder. Mix in salt and lemon zest. -Use a pastry cutter or fingers to blend in the butter and egg. Dough will be crumbly. Pat roughly 2/3 of the dough into the prepared pan.
-In another bowl, stir together the sugar, cornstarch and lemon juice. Gently mix in the fruit. Sprinkle the fruit mix evenly over the crust. Crumble remaining dough over the berry layer.
-Bake 45-60 minutes, until top is slightly brown. (This took an extra 10 to 15 minutes in my oven.) Cool completely (fridge is good for this) before cutting into squares. Once cut, store in fridge, bring to room temp to eat.

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