Tuesday, January 19, 2010

TWD—Chocolate Oatmeal Almost-Candy Bars

Kevin really doesn’t like raisins.  I say that nicely, but he really doesn’t like them.  I knew if I was to make these “candy bars” and have any hopes that he and even the boys would eat them that I would not be making them with raisins.  Lillian of Confectiona's Realm chose our recipe this week for Tuesday’s With Dorie.  She chose Chocolate Oatmeal Almost-Candy Bars on pages 114-115.  They have an oatmeal cookie layer with peanuts, then a fudge layer that has raisins and more peanuts.  Oh, did I mention Kevin doesn’t really care for the peanut chocolate combo either.  Nope, not gonna fly here. 

Here’s what I decided to do.  I made half the recipe—we certainly didn’t need a 9x13 pan of these no matter what I put in them!  I was all set to make them in an 8x8 inch square pan, then I found some little heart shaped pans at World Market and decided I’d make a couple in those pans and didn’t know exactly how much would be left, so I put the rest in an 8x4 inch bread pan.  But what did I do since you now know I wasn’t planning on raisins and peanuts?   Hmmm?

Does this help?

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Well, I guess not really, you still can’t tell what’s hiding inside.  Let’s see, what other pictures do I have?

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I did not put nuts in the oatmeal cookie layer, I lined them up on top.  Hmmm?  Pecans.  What else goes with pecans and chocolate?  Anyone?

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Well, that’s not very pretty, what in the world is it?  Why it’s mashed Rolo Caramel Candies, it is.  Yep, I went with pecans and caramel instead of peanuts and raisins.  Turtles, anyone?  So, while the Rolos aren’t that pretty, I went with them because they are a softer caramel (and I’m too lazy to make my own).  I made some other cookies during the holidays that had a Kraft caramel in the middle and while they were really good, after the cookies sat for a time, the caramel inside got really hard.  So I decided to use Rolos.  Then I covered the pecans and caramel with the chocolate/fat free! condensed milk mixture (I always use fat free condensed milk—you know, to make a much healthier bar ;)).  I like to do this kind of thing in a piping bag—it makes for more easier, even distribution.  I used some chopped milk chocolate as I think that milk chocolate goes better with the pecans and caramel, in this case anyway.  Oh, I also left the cinnamon out of the cookie dough.

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Cookie Sprinkles.

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Cool time.  Cut time. And, photos!

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Holy cow!  These are REALLY good.  Like scary good.  Like, “Hey-everybody-eat–these-quick-good.”

And so, they did.  The boys really like them.  I’m pretty sure Kevin likes them.  I know he’s eaten a few.  I have tasted them, but sworn off eating too much of them.   I actually took that first photo, then decided to cut them each in half.  About a one inch square is puh-lenty!

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Then try not to eat three, four, five of them! ;)

The bars that were made in the bread pan are a little thick on the bottom cookie layer.  The ones in the heart pans are perfect.  In the photo above, these were cut right after chilling them for a few hours, as Dorie said they are best chilled.  Well, that was if they had raisins and peanuts.  The caramel was a little to hard to bite with the chilled bars.  At room temperature, they are much, MUCH better!

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Ooey, gooey chocolaty caramel, pecan nutty goodness with wholesome oats!  Sigh.  What’s not to love?  Thank you, Lillian (great, yummy blog, by the way!).   That’s all for today.  Next up, I’ve got more delicious healthy treats to share with you!  I’ve gotta keep it real here.  I love baking.  I love TWD.  I will keep baking.  But I’ve got to NOT eat so much of this stuff.  So I’ve been looking for healthier alternatives.  And I’m finding lots of great things.  Check out the Almost Vegan Spelt Walnut Chocolate Chip Cookies on my last post if you missed them.  I’ve got more.  I’ll try to get them posted soon.  Hey, check out the other TWD bloggers to see what they did with these bars, I’ve heard talk of dried cranberries instead of raisins, or butterscotch chips or peanut butter chips or…..well, just check them out!

50 comments:

Lisa Ernst said...

Your approach to these bars is perfect and over the top (in a good way of course).How fun and yummy! I know I couldn't stop at one.

chocolatechic said...

Brilliant with the caramel and pecans.

spike. said...

wow- rolos! amazing

♥peachkins♥ said...

I can almost taste them!

Flourchild said...

Girl I would way 300 pounds if I lived in your house! You went over the top with all that candy,but I Love it!! Rolos are amazing!
Your bars look incredible..I love the pecans on top too..perfect post!

Fallon said...

I hear you on baking and eating it! That's why I haven't done any baking. Gotta get the sugar out of my system. So far so good!

These bars look amazing and I actually like your combination much better then the original recipe. Those pecans are beautiful!

erin said...

As I got to the caramel part, I had to stop and just stare. Wow, I really wish I would have thought of that, those sound amazing!

Mary said...

Those look amazing! Caramel and pecans beat raisins and peanuts any day!

Megan said...

GAAAH! You're killing me - way too much good stuff in there.

Tia said...

this is AWESOME! seriously great ideas here. Rolos - what could be better! great job.

Karen said...

oh yum! :) Love the rolos on there! who doesn't love caramel and chocolate together?

Lillian said...

Oh, my. I just have no words to describe what you've done. I must go home immediately and try it your way. Thank you! And thanks for baking with me this week!

Gourmified said...

YUMMMMMMM!!!!

Maria said...

I love the heart shapes!

bakingwiththeboys said...

CARAMEL! Love the idea of the Rolos - no muss no fuss. We loved these!

Gourmified said...

Oh you're so funny. In response to your post on my blog:

I use the macro setting. My old camera is about 5 years old and I just got my new one about 7 months ago. Both are/were Nikon. Once I use the macro setting to take the photo, I use Picasa 3 to do all the editing. So in this week's post, I couldn't get very close and did what I could, but cropped it closer and did some color touch-ups to brighten it since my old camera is so dumb. Does that help?

Clivia said...

You are a baad girl. Rolos in a January recipe? I am not look at your photos again. I am not planning a trip to the bulk store. I am not dreaming about the combination of pecans and caramel... whimper...

Susan said...

Can I come and live with you? Love your substitutions!!! They look divine!

noble pig said...

Crazy, I just found a bag of Rolo's last night. Love these.

Donna-FFW said...

Can I just tell you I always smile at your posts?? I always try and guess how you'll add your own spin on things. I love how you do that! These look like a fabulous treat!

Eliana said...

I'm not a fan of raisins either so your version of these bars are perfect for me :)

Kayte said...

OMW, I am not letting the guys see your blog this week...they would want me to make these and that is way too much chocolate for me to be able to work with and still remain standing. You are such a star on all these baking things. The guys are after me to make more already.

jillbert said...

We need some mega-healthy treats to cancel these out! I love your turtle version - chocolate, caramel, and pecans are SO good together!

vibi said...

I'm sorry Katrina... but this is too much, I have to close the page... it is soooooo excruciating!!!

Darn you...

Jacque said...

Oh my goodness me, I think I fainted a little when you got to the caramel topping stuff. Wow, those do look good... I would have had to starting passing them off to the neighbors and pronto to keep from eating them all myself. Nice work!

TeaLady said...

O.M.W. Rollos!!! Love those. This is the best variation - EVER!!!

mike said...

Those are not only dangerous - they should be outlawed...! Love it! The things (creations) you come up with are wonderful... I can barely get the published recipe done! :) Well done Katrina! (heart) the heat shapes too!

Jules Someone said...

Holy smokes that looks good! I never thought about the Rolo thing.

Shauna from Piece of Cake said...

Pure insanity! I love it. And so fun to find another baking mom blog! Keep up the great work!

Hornedfroggy said...

Awesome, K! Love the hearts!! :)

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Teanna said...

ROLOS!!!! ROLOS!!!! OK, seriously. Seriously! If you ever come to NY, please bring me some baked goods, because I love what you do!

Oh, and I did use sweetened condensed milk, not evaporated milk! I don't know why I typed that but thanks for letting me know!

These look great!

Kim said...

WOW. I want one of your bars. They look so yummy. I'm now craving rolos.

PheMom said...

I have to say, I thought about subbing pecans, but couldn't really think it through - now I'm glad I didn't because I never would have thought of this genius! I have to try them this way next time!

Carla said...

Yea so I def made a 13x9 pan, but now I have goodies in the freezer. Great job making the subs and making it work :)

p.s. you couldn't really taste the raisins, but I don't think I put enough in.

Mimi said...

Ok, now I have to try your recipe. Those look incredible, really incredible.
Mimi

Leslie said...

Wowza! Way to take this over the top! I'm glad you had fun with these.

Rachel said...

oh WOW these look amazing--now I want to make another version with caramel and pecans!

Romaine said...

I'm not sure but I think these cookies may be illegal. Something about inducing a sugar high? Oh my goodness girl! Love your creativity.

Isabelle said...

Your bars look awesome! I love your substitutions!

Amanda said...

Wow I think your version is way better than mine, love that it's caramely!!!

Art and Appetite said...

Holy Appetite, Katrina!

Your Innovation plus creativity makes this extra special. Thanks for sharing your brilliant ideas!

Jannett said...

wow....these look amazing... :)

Liz said...

Okay, missy, we need a new rule. Your job is to read the TWD recipes a few weeks in advance and then email me all your suggestions for variations, because yours always sound AWESOME and I end up being really jealous and wanting to make them again with your variations. So...get to it! I'm waiting for my email now. :)

Sweet and Savory said...

I love those hearts. I also like the changes you made to make those delicious candy/cookies,even better.

lasinthekitchen said...

Holy Cow! Katrina, can you bake a batch for me please? =) I didn't think these cookies were too sweet at all, so I know I'd LOVE your version! =) How do you come up with these ideas? Love it!

Avanika [YumsiliciousBakes] said...

OMG!! I was expecting something extra from you, but I never ever though of this! Spectacular.. Here's one recipe I'm going to do for sure, in your way! Rolo's are peanut butter candies?

Tracey said...

Oh wow, the way you layered those was brilliant - simply brilliant! I wish I had an ounce of your creativity!

Anne said...

Oh. Man. You are BRILLIANT! I didn't get to this recipe but I'm making a note in the book to do the rolos next time. Awesome!

Annie said...

yum yum yum! these look soooooooo goooooood!