Scandinavian Blondies

scandanavian-blondiesMike gave me the King Arthur Flour Cookie Companion for my birthday. Next to Boarman, the stone pig that my mom gave me last Christmas for our backyard, it’s my favorite gift I’ve ever gotten.

The Cookie Companion is a cookie baker’s bible, featuring variations on essentials from sugar cookies to bars and everything in between. I can honestly say that I intend to bake each recipe in its 400+ pages; with each one I read, I learn something new that I cannot wait to try.

These bars are adapted from the original King Arthur Flour recipe; I added lemon extract and lemon zest to the batter. They are delicious, both cakey and chewy, with a wonderful lemon almond flavor. If you’re not a lemon fan, you can skip the lemon altogether and just go with the traditional almond extract in the batter, or use a combination of almond and vanilla extracts.

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
  • zest of 1 medium lemon
  • 8 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds

Preparation

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Lightly grease an 8 x 8 square baking pan.

In a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat eggs until light colored and thick. Add sugar and salt, continuing to beat until shiny and pale yellow.

Add extracts, melted butter, and 1/2 cup of the flour, folding in gently. Fold in remaining 1/2 cup of flour.

Pour batter into prepared pan and sprinkle with sliced almonds.

Bake for 30-35 minutes, until the edges begin to pull away from the sides of the pan and are a very light golden color.

Remove from oven and cool in pan before cutting. Store at room temperature.

Makes 16 bars.

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