Friday, August 12, 2011

Apricot Pie Bars



I have been making all things apricot over the past two weeks.  Apricots are my most favorite fruit to preserve. They are easy (no pealing) and usually I can find someone who will give me the apricots off their tree so they are free.  This year my cousin-in-law offered the apricots off her tree.  We picked and picked and picked and ended up with tons of awesome apricots.  I’m almost finished juicing, jamming and drying them.   We have also been adding them to everything we are eating. This is my favorite recipe from this year.  
Powdered Butter to the rescue:
When I was making this recipe last night I was planning on using fresh butter. But I found I only had one stick, and the recipe calls for three.  So being the food storage girl that I am, I used the one stick and then made up the difference with powdered butter.  This is my favorite way to use powdered butter.  I find that using part fresh butter and part powdered butter yields awesome results.   When we ate these luscious bars no one could tell I did not use all fresh butter and I did not have to run to the store to buy some more butter. 

Apricot Pie Bars
adapted from Rebecca Rather,
The Pastry Queen

Crust and Topping
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, chilled  ( I used ½ cup butter and 1 cup butter powder)
Fruit Filling
  • 4 Tablespoons egg powder plus 8 T water (or  4 fresh eggs)
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 1 cup sour cream powder plus ½ cup hot water (or 1 cup sour cream)
  • 3/4 cup flour
  • pinch salt
  • 2  cups apricot puree
  • ¾ cup quick tapioca
To make the crust and topping, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a 9x13 inch baking pan.

Combine the flour, sugar, butter powder and salt in the bowl of a food processor.  Pulse a few times to mix.  Cut the butter into 1/2-inch cubes, and add to the flour mixture.  Process until the butter is evenly distributed but the mixture is still crumbly, 30-60 seconds.

Reserve 1 1/2 cups of the mixture to use as the topping.  Press the remaining mixture into the bottom of the pan, and bake 12-15 minutes.  Cool for at least 10 minutes.

To make the filling, beat the sour cream powder and the hot water in a large bowl until smooth.  Add egg powder, water, sugar, flour, salt, and mix until combine.  Gently fold in apricot puree, sugar, and tapioca.  Spoon the mixture over the crust.  Sprinkle the remaining flour mixture evenly over the filling, and bake 45 to 55 minutes.

Cool at least 1 hour before cutting into bars, or scoop out of the pan to serve cobbler-style.

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