Monday, November 26, 2012

Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars

First, an apology for being so lax in my posting for the past few months.  I gave birth to my daughter Madeline in September so I’ve been a bit busy since then.  We had a lot of sleepless nights at the beginning so if I had any free time it was spent napping, not baking!  But now that she’s 2 ½ months we’ve started establishing a bit of a schedule.  I’ve learned to take full advantage of any time that she’s napping or when my husband is home to watch her. 

This past weekend was Thanksgiving and I was all set to post a recipe that I made for Thanksgiving dessert.  Unfortunately it turned into a bit of a disaster (I’ll blame it on being out of practice) and most of the results went into the garbage.  I had the chance to redeem myself on Sunday when our friends stopped by with their young daughter.  I planned to make these Salted Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars, only to realize I didn’t have caramels that morning.  Really, the baking gods were working against me this weekend.  I decided to just leave the caramel layer out and add in a mix of dark and white chocolate chips to jazz the bars up a bit.  I also added a sprinkling of salt on top to balance the sweetness.  The bars ended up turning out great, and they were done in under an hour.  With a newborn in the house, that’s essential!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Bars (adapted from Brown Eyed Baker)

2 1/8 cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon salt
12 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled to room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
1 egg
1 egg yolk
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups chocolate chips (I used both white and semi-sweet)
Sea salt for sprinkling over bars

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease a 9-inch square pan; set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda, and salt; set aside.

Using an electric mixer, mix together the melted butter and sugars on medium speed until combined. Add the egg, egg yolk, and vanilla extract and mix until smooth. Slowly add the dry ingredients and mix on low, just until combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.

Press the cookie dough into the prepared pan, smoothing the top with a spatula. Sprinkle the bars with sea salt.

Bake the cookie bars for 30-32 minutes, or until the top of the bars are light golden brown and the edges start to pull away from the pan. Cool the bars on a wire rack to room temperature, then cut into squares and serve. Store leftovers in an airtight container at room temperature.