My Grandpa turned 92 last week and my Grandma threw him an afternoon soiree filled with a three piece jazz band, baseball themed party favors, and a ridiculously sweet spice cake with cream cheese frosting that may or may not be inappropriately decorated…………….
What do you get a man who’s 92, has everything he could ever need and lives in a small assisted living home? My year old and I put our thinking caps on and this is what we came up with: A bunch of sticks that we gathered from the outside lawn of his building. These were a last minute addition. You never know when they might come in handy. We got him a few crossword puzzle books to keep his mind sharp and he happens to love them. We framed a couple pictures of the little man and his brother because great-grandkids are something special, right? And lastly, we made him a batch of cookie bars. He has a mean sweet tooth and I never like to show up anywhere without something from my kitchen to share!
My Grandpa really knows his away around the kitchen. In his day he did a lot of cooking and let me tell you he had some serious game. He doesn’t cook a
whole lot at all anymore so I try to bring him something from my kitchen every time I go for a visit.
I got a gigantic golden cookie cookbook for Christmas and have only made one recipe out of it. I had these bars bookmarked so on a tuesday afternoon, the little man and I got to work.
These chocolate raspberry bars are beyond good. A chocolate shortbread base, a gooey raspberry middle, a layer of melted chocolate chips, and an almond macaroon type layer on top- it’s like multiple cookies in one! The only thing I might change next time, is using a seedless raspberry jam. The seeds were a little tough for my gramps.
These chocolate raspberry bars have an almond base and are super easy to make!
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1/4 teaspoon table salt
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
- 1 1/2 cups granulated sugar, divided
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup raspberry jam
- 1 tablespoon orange liqueur or orange juice
- 1 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
- 1 cup finely ground almonds
- 4 large egg whites
- 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
- Preheat the oven to 325F degrees.
- Line a 13 x 9-inch pan with tinfoil.
- In large bowl, mix the flour, cocoa powder and salt.
- In an electric mixer, beat butter, 1/2 cup sugar and vanilla until creamy.
- Mix in the flour mixture and then press dough into the prepared pan to form a smooth, even layer. Prick all over with a fork and bake for 15-20 minutes or until firm to the touch.
- While the base is cooking, combine the raspberry jam with the liqueur; set aside.
- Process the ground almonds, egg whites, 1 cup sugar, and almond extract in food processor or blender until well blended.
- When base is cooked, remove pan from oven. Increase oven temperature to 375F degrees.
- Spread raspberry jam mixture over the cookie base. Sprinkle with the chocolate chips. Pour the almond mixture over the chocolate chips, spreading evenly.
- Bake until lightly browned about 25 minutes.
- Let cool completely before cutting and serving.