I sometimes forget how wonderful blondies are. In the bar cookies category, they are frequently over-shadowed by their showier relatives, the brownie family, and don’t get much attention. But a
good blondie is a wonderful thing – moist, chewy, and loaded with nuts and chocolate chips. They are more subtle than brownies, with the same deep caramelized brown sugar flavor that you find in
classic chocolate chip cookies. A shot of bourbon really perks them up, as does the addition of toasted walnuts and good quality chocolate chips (I love Ghirardelli’s 60% cacao morsels, which are
available in many supermarkets). If you want to bump up the chocolate factor even more, you could glaze them with a little ganache, or just increase the morsels to ¾ cup. But that might be moving too close to the neighbors, those spotlight-hogging Brownies.
Adapted from a recipe in Alice Medrich’s Cookies and Brownies (Warner Books, 1999)
Makes 16 blondies
1 cup (121 g) all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
¾ cup (162 g) firmly packed light brown sugar
¼ cup (50 g) granulated sugar
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon bourbon
1 cup toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped
½ cup (85 g) semisweet chocolate morsels (I prefer Ghirardelli 60% cacao morsels)
1. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line an 8-inch square baking pan with aluminum foil and spray with foil with non-stick cooking spray.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder and salt; set aside.
3. Melt the butter and transfer it to a medium bowl. Stir in the brown sugar, making sure that all lumps are dissolved. Stir in the granulated sugar, egg, vanilla and bourbon until well blended. Stir in the flour, then half of the walnuts and half of the chocolate morsels. Scrape the batter into the prepared pan, smoothing it into an even layer. Sprinkle with the remaining walnuts and chocolate morsels. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden brown on top. Cool in the pan on a wire rack.4. Cut the blondies into 16 squares. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 3 days.