What could compare to the seductive power of brownies, with their fudgy chewy insides and the dark chocolatey goodness? How about it's equally alluring cousin, the blondie? Often relegated to the status of a brownie without chocolate, the blondie relies on dark sugar for a lingering sweetness. Tart dried cherries prevent it from being one note, and butterscotch chips provide the requisite bite. Drizzled with agave syrup (this girl loves her sugar), they turned out perfectly moist and very very addictive.
I used a version of this basic blondie recipe from Smitten Kitchen, who adapted it from How to cook everything. Like SK says, this is an infinitely adaptable one, I can imagine this with all kinds of nuts, chocolate chips, chunks, some amaretto; or you could just keep it plain and enjoy the star of the show- the deep, complex flavor of brown sugar.
Butterscotch, cherry blondies
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 egg, at room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup melted butter
1/4 cup butterscotch chips
1/2 cup dried cherries, chopped
a pinch of salt
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
Mix the brown sugar with the melted butter and whisk till it is blended nicely. Add the egg and vanilla. Mix in the dry ingredients- the flour, salt and baking powder, soda. Stir in the chopped cherries and butterscotch chips and pour in a greased pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 20 mins or till a cake tester comes out clean. You will smell this dessert before you taste it...the bouquet of molasses and butter is quite irresistible.
Pull it out of the oven and drizzle some agave syrup while it is still warm. If you want neat bite size pieces with sharp corners, let cool and then cut into pieces. If you are anything like me, you will eat it warm, right out of the pan, crumbs be damned.
I'll be back from my vacation tomorrow and will respond to comments and catch up with all fellow marathoners. My google reader is overflowing and I'm so psyched about reading all the entries!