Monday, January 18, 2010

coffee crunch bars

I've had Orangette's recipe for Coffee Crunch Bars stuck with a magnet onto my fridge for quite some time now. The only thing keeping me from making them was my lack of sliced almonds, which seem to constantly be sold out at the local supermarket. But I finally got them, and quickly whipped up a batch of these. 
While they were in the oven, the timer ticked faithfully...I had set it for 45 minutes as it stated in the instructions. Soon the tasty fragrance of almonds turned into a darker, burned smell. I checked the clock...still 15 minutes to go. I went online to make sure I had written everything down right...wait, why wasn't the recipe on Orangette anymore? And why did it smell like my bars were burning? I googled the recipe and found this information on a (fantastic) blog called The Bitten Word : I wasn't the only one who had been given the wrong instructions, the baking time had been written down wrong! It was supposed to be 25 minutes instead of 45. I raced to the oven and pulled them out just in time...the edges were a little dark, but once the bars had cooled and I tried one, I knew I hadn't failed. They are DELICIOUS. Smoky coffee flavor mixed with the delicate crunch of almonds and luxurious chunks of chocolate...the perfect companion to Chai Latte or a tall cold glass of milk. Highly recommended, unless you've made a New Year's resolution about self-control.

Coffee Crunch Bars
Adapted from Leah Reich and her grandmother, Mamie Chaiffetz

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. salt
8 oz. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup tightly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup tightly packed dark muscovado sugar
1/2 tsp. almond extract
2 Tbsp. instant espresso or instant coffee powder
1/2 cup sliced almonds
1 cup semisweet chocolate chips (I used bar chocolate broken up into chunks for a more rustic look)

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, and salt. In another medium bowl, cream the butter and sugars with an electric mixer, beating until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add the almond extract and instant espresso, and beat 1 minute more. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the flour mixture in three doses, mixing until just absorbed. Stir in the almonds and chocolate chips. The dough will be thick. Turn the dough out onto an ungreased (approximately 12-inch x 17-inch) rimmed baking sheet. Using your hands, press the dough evenly into a 12-inch by 12-inch square. Bake for about 25 minutes, or until the edges are browned and the top looks set. Cool in the pan for 1 minute; then, while still hot, cut into 24 (2-inch by 3-inch) bars. Transfer immediately to wire rack to cool completely. Bars will crisp as they cool.

Note: Bars will keep, sealed in an airtight container at room temperature, for up to 5 days. Their flavor improves with time.

Yield: 24 bars

p.s. the fellas over at The Bitten Word suggested trying this recipe out with an egg included if you want a more brownie-like consistancy...I'm thinking about it...though the original recipe is just DELISH...




  1. it's always so sad to lose a yummy recipe and this one definitely looks yummy.

  2. ummm great pics ( a good pic always makes the recipe more inviting).
    My tummy is rumbling.

  3. Yum scrum...does your hubby like? I'd make but I'd need to do it at a time when lots of hungry people were about...otherwise I'd slowly (ish) scoff the lot over 5 days! xxx

  4. Hubby doesn't like coffee, so he wasn't too crazy about these. But he's not much of a sweet-tooth.
    So...yes....I'm slowly(ish) finishing these off....oh no.....

  5. thanks for visiting me today and leaving such comforting words. this is a sweet recipe...will try it sometime soon.

    one love.

  6. Good morning doll. :o) Those look so yummy! I can just imagine how wonderful they would be with my hazelnut coffee I'm sipping right now.

  7. I have made those, too, and LOVE them! Good to know about the time being wrong - I had just started pulling them out early.

  8. I copied the recipe for my recipe book. Will give them a try, but dark sugars and muscovado are hard to come by here. So I have to order them in. My hubby loves coffee might make these a Valentines treat for him to take to (american) football with his flask. I'll have the rest at home under a blanket and my own almond flavoured coffee........ I add drops of almond essence to it, they don't have flavoured coffee here either.

  9. YUM ! Well, dear one it is finally raining out here in dry california..rain rain rain...

    buddy is curled up by my side, whiskey sour has on his tweed sweater with the leather buttons and a scarf..he is curled up in my red plaid chair by "woodstove" and i made dandelion a bed out of an old red blanket..she is on top of my farm table...don't tell anybody...all cozy too.

    i got out Betty Crocker...i am in that old fashion baking mood...was looking for a dessert to make and then i see these..they look so good and john will love them..he loves anything coffee....i'll make them this afternoon...for supper i am thinking spare ribs in sauce roasting in the oven with a baked potato and salad...john had to drive to cambria today in the rain and I was looking for cozy food for when he gets home tonight.....

    i'll check back tomorrow.....

    kary and buddy

  10. Yummy yum yums! I want one of these now please :) Thanks for the tip on the timings, so glad you managed to rescue them
    Love Morwenna xoxo

  11. I am so, so going to try these! Good catch on the timing, too. They sound just perfect. Diet-schmiet!

    Thanks for all your sweet comments and support, my friend!

    xoxo Gigi

  12. Oh, wow. These sound delicious! How wonderful!

    Agatha x



Related Posts with Thumbnails