Blueberry and Cherry crumb bars
I am such a lover of tray bakes and bars, they’re just the perfect size for a snack and you can really play around with the fillings. I especially love crumb bars, I’ve made P&J bars before which had the same shortbread topping and base. They were heavenly! After snooping around Smitten Kichens website, which I seem to be doing most days, I came across this summer concoction. I was put in charge of the tea-time treats for a family gathering we had this weekend and thought these would be a great choice, and they were! I decided to change the recipe slightly and add Cherries into the Blueberry mix to give it more of a fruity flavour and add some more texture. These bars are especially delicious hot out of the oven, they’re gooey and messy; but if you can wait until they’ve firmed up a bit, the middle becomes a jam, perfect against the crumbly shortbread. The subtle fruit jam isn’t overpowered by the buttery shortbread as they balance out each other well. This is a delicious light bake to transition you into the summer months. So get in that kitchen and get baking!
Ingredients – Recipe adapted from Smitten Kitchen
- 1 cup white sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup cold unsalted butter (8 ounces)
- 1 egg
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- Zest and juice of one lemon
- 2 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
- 1 1/2 cups cherries (pitted and quartered)
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 4 teaspoons cornstarch
Preheat the oven to 375 F/190C. Grease a 9×13 inch pan with some butter. In a bowl combine together a cup of sugar, 3 cups of flour and the baking powder. Then stir in the salt and lemon zest. Add in the cubed butter and using a pastry butter or your fingertips, rub in the butter into the dry ingredients until it looks like crumbs. Add in the egg and combine again. Take half of your shortbread and pat it into the base of your pan, until it is covered the pan and is equally distributed. Place your pan and the remaining shortbread into the fridge while making the filling.
In another bowl, add the sugar, cornstarch and lemon juice and combine. Stir in your cherries and blueberries until all are equally coated in the sauce. Take your pan and shortbread out of the fridge and pour your filling over the top, using a spoon to make sure it is in an equal layer.
Next, take the rest of your shortbread and crumble it on top of your filling, like a crumb. Bake in the oven for 35-45 minutes until the top is slightly brown. Cool completely before cutting into squares.