I needed a quick and easy dessert for tonight for a gathering of girlfriends. Naturally my mind went to cookies. However, I decided that was too predictable. Bar cookies are yummy and I don't make them very often because I haven't found a good recipe. Well, the search is over. I decided to start with my basic cookie recipe. Then I used all brown sugar (instead of a combo with granulated), added an extra egg, and increased the baking powder a bit. Once baked in a 13- x 9-inch pan, the results were delicious and even easier than the super-easy cookie recipe. (Like all those superlatives?) Blondies take longer to bake than the cookies, but the prep time is reduced because you don't have to scoop the batter. Any chocolate/fruit/toffee combination would work well. At the last minute, I threw in some chocolate-covered cranberries that have been taunting me from the pantry and was pleased with the results. Enjoy!
1 cup butter, softened
2 cups brown sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
4 1/2 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. baking soda
1 (11.5-oz.) bag semisweet chocolate chips
1 (6-oz.) bag dried cherries
1. Beat butter and brown sugar until fluffy. Add in eggs, 1 at a time, beating just until blended after each addition. Add in vanilla.
2. Combine flour and next 3 ingredients in a bowl. Gradually add to butter mixture, beating until blended. Add in chocolate chips and cherries.
3. Line a 13- x 9-inch baking pan with aluminum foil, and coat with cooking spray. Spread batter into pan.
4. Bake at 350° for 50 minutes or until done.