Thursday, January 24, 2008

Nutty Caramel Squares

One of my past roommates made a delicous bar cookies she called an Oatmeal Carmelita. It was a dense oatmeal cookie crust with caramel and chocolate chips. I've played a little with her recipe and have gotten good reviews from friends. This cookies combines oatmeal, pecans and caramel.

For the base you'll need:

2 sticks, plus 4 tablespoons butter, room temperature
1 1/2 cups light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon baking soda
1/2 tablespoon salt
2 cups all purpose flour
2 cups rolled oats

Cream butter and sugar, add vanilla. Combine flour, baking soda, and salt. Slowly add flour mixture to the butter and sugar. Stir to incorporate all of the flour. Add the two cups of rolled oats and stir. The dough is very stiff and I usually end up using my hands to really make all the oats stick.
oatmeal caramel pecan bars (5)
Line a 13 X 9 inch pan with non-stick foil. Divide the dough in half. Press half the dough onto the bottom of the pan lined with foil, bake for 10 minutes at 350 degrees.
oatmeal caramel pecan bars (3)
In a medium bowl combine one 12 ounce jar of caramel ice cream topping and 3 tablespoons of flour.
oatmeal caramel pecan bars (6)
Sprinkle one cup of toasted nuts (I used pecans) over the crust and drizzle the caramel over the top of the nuts.
oatmeal caramel pecan bars (2)
Add one bag of butterscotch chips to the remaining oatmeal dough and crumble together. Sprinkle this mixture evenly over the caramel and nuts and bake for an additonal 20 minutes. The top will still look and feel a little loose, but remove from the oven anyway, it sets up as it cools.
oatmeal caramel pecan bars (8)
These bars are delicious and a crowd pleaser, but cut them small because they're dense and rich.

Another variation that I've had success with is to replace the butterscotch chips with 2/3 of a cup EACH of chocolate chips and peanut butter chips, as well as substituting peantus for the pecans.

3 Comments:

  1. bindhiya said...
    Just stopping to say "hi",
    Those 'nutty caramel Squares" look delicious..I am off to try it!!
    take care.
    bindhiya
    Carrie said...
    I make a recipe just like this, and it's always a crowd pleaser. Another fun topping is replacing the butterscotch chips with chocolate chips and coconut, and then it sort of tastes like a richer Samoa. Yum.
    Cheryl said...
    Oh my, I just love good stuff upon good stuff piled on top of each other.

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