Kick start your day with a good breakfast

The Breakfast Bar–Chocolate Chip-Cranberry Bars

on October 29, 2013

Imagine! A happy celebration at the office!

wild office party

A colleague is celebrating 13 years with the company on October 30, but why wait? I brought the Ooey-Gooey Chocolate-Chip-Cranberry Bars from Nancy Baggett’s Simply Sensational Cookies to our weekly staff meeting to add a little levity to the morning.

They couldn’t be easier! I turned them out this morning before I left for the office at 8 a.m. Pardon the blurry photo… it’s probably the shakes from the sugar rush!

Chocolate for breakfast? Everything in moderation!

Chocolate for breakfast? Everything in moderation!

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

1 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs

1 6-oz package (1 cup) semisweet chocolate morsels

1 cup (4 1/2 oz) chopped pecans or walnuts

1 cup (5 1/2 oz) dried sweetened cranberries

1 14-oz can sweetened condensed milk

1 large egg, at room temperature

2 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract and/or 1/2 teaspoon almond extract

Baking Preliminaries: Position a rack in the middle of the oven; preheat to 350°F. Generously grease a 9 by 13-inch baking pan or coat with nonstick spray.

In a medium bowl, stir together the butter and graham cracker crumbs until blended. Spread the mixture evenly in the baking pan press down firmly to form a crust.

Sprinkle the chocolate morsels, nuts, and dried cranberries over the crust. Wipe out the bowl used for the graham cracker mixture, then with a  fork, beat together the condensed milk egg, and vanilla in it. Spoon the condensed milk mixture evenly over the top.

Bake (middle rack) for 25 to 30 minutes until tinged with brown and just slightly darker at the edges. Transfer to a wire rack; let cool. For easiest cutting, firm up in the refrigerator for 15 to 20 minutes. Then cut crosswise into sixths and lengthwise into fourths (or as desired), using a large sharp knife.

Yield: Makes twenty-four 2 1/8-inch squares


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