Monday, October 19, 2009

Congo Bars

So much has happened in these last couple of days. For starters, yesterday I had my first day back at university. Honestly, I was dreading it and was filled with panic and anxiety. I stepped off the bus and was shocked to feel the intense heat. I had half forgotten what it was like over there and half expected it to be more wintery in the Ramat Gan area than Jerusalem, as it is October (what was I thinking?!). When I got onto campus I actually felt better and when I started to see my friends and former classmates and get into classes, I felt a lot more optimistic about how the year would go and I felt a strong inner reassurance that with all my time spent with the girls at SFW I would need the time away, even if that time is being spent on a university campus. More importantly than that, this Shabbat I spent with the school in one of Israel's four holy cities, namely Chevron. To say that this Shabbat was the most meaningful, uplifting, rejuvenating, inspiring Shabbat would be a gross understatement. But it was all of those things. Filled with intense singing and words of Torah and a tour of the city, that weekend will stay with me and I'm sure my girls for a lifetime. On Friday night, after dinner, we had what's called a tisch. Led by the amazing Rav N, we had a gathering of all the girls and sang songs and heard words of wisdom. Only a single girl left the gathering the whole time. In any case, these Congo Bars were the bars that I made for the tisch. Unfortunately, I heard complaints that not everyone got and the truth is I didnt make enough at all. These bars come from Flo Braker's Baking for All Occasions. As I was making them to travel I omitted the glaze and also the walnuts, just because I felt like it. They came out sooooo moist and chewy, with the brownie being the star, as the flavor of the bottom couldnt really stand up to the flavor of the chocolate. I see myself baking these again and funking up the additions to it to make them really shine. Truly though, these were delicious and I love the look of the double layer.

Congo Bars
from Baking for All Occasions

Congo Layer:
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3 ounces margarine, melted and cooled
1 1/4 cups brown sugar
1 egg
1 egg white
1 tsp vanilla

Brownie Layer:
1 cup plus 2 tbsp all purpose flour
1/4 cup dutch process cocoa
1/8 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
4 ounces margarine
4 ounces unsweetened or bittersweet chocolate
1 1/3 cups sugar
2 eggs
1 egg yolk
2 tsp pure vanilla

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9x13 inch pan with parchment paper. Grease the paper and set aside the pan.
Combine the flour, salt, and leavening on a sheet of parchment and set aside.

Place the margarine, sugar, eggs and vanilla in a large bowl.
Stir just until combined.
Add the dry ingredients,
and stir just until blended.

Spread the batter into the prepared pan- using an offset spatula is very helpful.

Bake for about twenty minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool while you make the second batter.

Combine all the dry ingredients for the brownie batter. Set aside.

Over medium low heat, melt the margarine and chocolate until smooth and shiny.

Add the sugar,
and stir until blended.
Add the eggs and vanilla,

and stir until smooth.

Add the dry ingredients,
and stir just until all the flour is evenly moistened. Dont overmix!
Using an offset spatula, spread the brownie batter over the baked blondies. Bake for about twenty five minutes. Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack. The cookies will set as they cool.
Score the blondies with a bench scraper to portion them as you wish.
Stack on a plate and serve! Love those two tone bars!

1 comment:

Esther said...

Yum Chavi! Did these taste as good as they looked?

Maybe I'll make them for shabbat!

You think they'll freeze well?