These bars are confusing. They have enough berries to qualify as a breakfast food, but they taste enough like pie to feel like a dessert. I think that means that you can enjoy them all day long.
You know what else is confusing? Coming home to find that your husband has dressed your strange little dog up in a truly tragic shirt.
But that’s what I came home to after work the other day. Husband thought he was hilarious. All I could do was sigh. Sigh, and then whip up something sweet to eat.
The flavors in these bars are simple and supremely satisfying. The crust has tons of cinnamon, which adds to the “warm,” pie-like flavor of the bars. I used frozen berries because I had them on hand when “the craving” struck, but I am dying to make them again with fresh berries.
The sweetness from the blueberries and raspberries contrasted nicely with the citrus flavors from the Valencia orange peel, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Any mixture of berries will work well. I think next time I’m going to use all blueberries, and I think I’ll add some basil, too.
Blueberry-Raspberry Pie Bars
Makes ~12 bars
You will need:
- 2 cups blueberries
- 1 cup raspberries
- 1 1/2 cups chilled unsalted butter, cubed
- 1 1/2 cups all-purpose white flour
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 2 1/3 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. salt
- Zest and juice of 1 fresh lemon
- 1 large egg
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 3 tsp. cornstarch
- 1 tsp. Valencia orange peel
- Powdered sugar, to serve (optional)
- Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 9×9 glass baking dish.
- In a large bowl (or standing mixer), combine butter, flour, egg, 3/4 cup sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, lemon zest, and salt.
- Pat half of the flour mixture into the baking dish to form a crust. Reserve the other half to add on top as a crust.
- In a separate bowl, stir together berries, lemon juice, cornstarch, vanilla extract, 1/4 cup white sugar, and Valencia orange peel.
- Evenly spread berry mixture on top of the crust.
- Scatter crumbled flour over the top.
- Bake at 350 for 45 minutes, or until crust is golden brown. Let cool for 20 minutes before slicing into bars and dusting with powdered sugar (if desired).