Saturday, May 17, 2014

Lunch Lady Peanut Butter Bars

Remember those totally awesome Peanut Butter Bars that the Lunch Ladies would make when you were a kid? I got the recipe folks! And it is spot on! These soft and chewy peanut butter based bars have a thin layer of whipped peanut butter on top to make them extra peanut buttery. They are finished with a magnificent layer of cocoa puff tasting chocolate frosting. 

Take me back Baby! These bars rock! They are easy to make and delicious. I am taking them to a BBQ today. I know they will go fast. Why do I know this? Because I have already "trimmed" the pan of bars four times. 

I just can't help myself. 





Lunch Lady Peanut Butter Bars
Slightly adapted from TRIED AND TRIED AGAIN

Ingredients
Base:
1 1/2 C Flour
1 tsp. Sea Salt
½ tsp. Baking Soda
¾ C Unsalted Butter softened
¾ C Sugar
¾ C Brown Sugar
2 tsp. Vanilla
1 1/2 C Chunky Peanut Butter (split into two 3/4 cup portions)
2 Large Eggs
1 ½ C Quick Oats (or Old Fashioned Oats pulsed a few times in a blender - whatever you have. Same thing.)

Frosting:
½ C Unsalted Butter softened (1 stick)
3 ½ C Powdered Sugar
3 T Cocoa Powder
¼ C Milk
1 tsp. Vanilla

Directions
-Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 
-In a small mixing bowl, mix together flour, baking soda and salt. Set aside.
-In a large mixing bowl, cream together butter, sugars, 3/4 C peanut butter, eggs and 
 vanilla until light and fluffy. 
-Gradually add dry ingredients, mix just until incorporated. 
-Stir in the oats.  
-Use clean palm or butter wrapper to press dough into a greased 11 x 15 Jelly Roll Pan 
 (cookie sheet with edges). My pan was about 12x16.
-Bake on center rack for 15 minutes, or until golden brown.  
-Cool for at least 15 minutes. (This is a good time to clean up your kitchen and make the 
 frosting.)
-To make the frosting, whip the remaining ¾ C Creamy Peanut Butter at high speed 
 until it becomes lighter colored and fluffy. 
-Glob the whipped peanut butter onto the cooled cookie base in a few different clumps 
 to make spreading easier. 
-Use the back of a rubber spatula to carefully spread the whipped peanut butter evenly 
 over the cooled cookie base. It will be a thin layer.
-Next, add butter to a small sauce pan and melt. 
-Add the milk and cocoa. Whisk.
-Cook over medium heat, stirring with the whisk constantly.  
-Heat just until boiling.  
-Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla. 
-Add the powdered sugar. Aggressively whisk until thickened, lumps of powdered sugar 
 are gone, and the chocolate mixture is smooth. 
-Pour over the peanut butter and gently spread over the peanut butter covered cookie. 
 This will be a thin layer as well.  
-Cool completely, and slice into bar cookies.

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