MORNING GLORY BARS
Before beginning any recipe, I always take a look at the measurements of each ingredient and figure out what is the least amount of measuring cups and spoons I can use. It is like a puzzle.
I have a few rules, I don’t like to scoop anything more than 4 times because I will lose count. Meaning, I will happily use a 1/4 cup to measure out 1 cup, but I will not if it is any more. And I will use a 1 teaspoon to measure out 1 tablespoon (3 teaspoons in a tablespoon), but I will not use a teaspoon to measure out 2 tablespoons.
I also do not like to mix and match measuring utensils because I can get easily confused. Meaning I will not measure out 1/2 cup and then add 4 tablespoons to get 3/4 cup. (4 tablespoons in 1/4 cup) .
And then there is factoring in the liquids. If you are measuring out anything liquid and sticky, like honey, you need to measure that before a dry ingredient. If you don’t, just grab a new measuring cup, it’s not even worth trying to clean and dry it.
Normally I can figure out how to swing it. Maybe a 1/4 teaspoon, 1 tablespoon, a 1/3 cup and a 1/2 cup. But for this particular recipe I think I used every measuring cup in the house. There are a lot of ingredients, and it can be a pain, but this recipe is worth it.
These bars are super soft but still a little chewy. They are not too sweet and the fruit and nuts really shine. They taste a lot like a morning glory muffin (hence the name) but a bit heartier and with more vanilla and less spice.
I decided to forgo the typical cinnamon, ginger, cloves, etc. for this recipe because I really wanted to taste the dates. Which you absolutely do!
And to top it all off (pun intended) the Turbinado sugar adds a nice, crunchy texture and a pretty, sugary glisten to the bars. The delicious recipe, worth every dirty measuring cup, is below.
Morning Glory Bars
Makes 2 dozen bars
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- ⅔ cup whole wheat flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 10 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- ¾ cup brown sugar
- ¼ cup granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 eggs
- ⅓ cup unsweetened applesauce
- ¾ cups chopped nuts (pecans and/or walnuts)
- ⅓ cup chopped dates
- ⅓ cup golden raisins
- ⅓ cup sweetened shredded coconut
- 2 tablespoons Turbinado sugar
- Preheat oven to 350F and lightly grease an 9-inch x 13-inch baking pan with butter or spray.
- In a medium mixing bowl whisk all prupose flour, whole wheat flour, baking soda and salt together until combined and no clumps of flour remain.
- In a large mixing bowl mix butter, brown sugar and granulated sugar with an electric mixer on a medium speed until combined.
- Mix in vanilla extract and eggs until combined.
- Add half of the flour mixture and mix on a medium-low speed until just combined. Add applesauce and mix until combined. Add the remaining half of the flour mixture and mix until just combined.
- Add nuts, dates, raisins and coconout and mix with a wooden spoon or spatula until evenly distributed.
- Pour dough into prepared baking dish and spread evenly with a lightly greased spatula. Sprinkle Turbinado sugar evenly over the dough.
- Bake bars for 22 to 25 minutes, or until center is set and the edges begin to brown.
- Allow bars to cool completely before slicing to serve.