We are introduced, at an early age, to the sweet wondernous of a cookie. From teething cookies to soothe the swollen aching gums of incoming incisors, onto animal crackers purchased in rectangular-shaped boxes bearing a string handle for easy toting by little fingers. Deciding which part of the animal should be eaten first-the trunk of the elephant or the tail of a lion-depended on how hungry one was. Savor each and every one or simply gobble them down as fast as possible.

My next cookie memory would be the ever famous, possibly all-time favorite, the chocolate chip cookie. There is nothing better than to bite into a round circle of baked dough sprinkled with gooey melt-in-your-mouth chocolate. A chocolate chip cookie can dry tears, heal broken hearts, mend scraped knees and elbows and solve sibling arguments. Most of the problems in the world could likely be solved by a properly baked, right out of the oven, chocolate chip cookie. The power of a cookie is underestimated.

I will attempt in the next 365 days to prepare and comment on a year’s worth of different cookies-one for each day. My goal is to share with others my extreme love of cookies-baking them and especially eating them! Feel free to send me your favorite recipe, your earliest cookie memories, or how cookies may have influenced your life. Cookies Rule!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Cookie Recipe #225 - Vanilla Chip Lemon Bars

This bar is a new twist on the traditional lemon bar with the addition of vanilla chips.

Ingredients: 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided, 1 cup granulated sugar, divided, 1/3 cup butter, softened, 3/4 cup vanilla chips, 1 egg (or 1/2 cup frozen egg substitute, thawed), 1/4 cup lemon juice, 2 teaspoons grated lemon peel, powdered sugar for sprinkling.

Instructions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In medium bowl, stir together 1 cup of the flour and 1/4 cup of the granulated sugar. With pastry blender (or clean fingers), cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Press mixture onto bottom of 9-inch square baking pan.

Bake 15 minutes in preheated 350 degree oven, or until lightly browned. Remove from oven and sprinkle vanilla chips evenly over crust.

In medium bowl, stir together egg, lemon juice, lemon peel, remaining 1/4 cup flour and remaining 3/4 cup granulated sugar; carefully pour over chips and crust.

Return to oven and bake 15 more minutes or until set. Cool slightly in pan on wire rack; sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Cool completely and cut into bars. Makes about 3 dozen bars.

"Hershey's Homemade", Hershey Foods Corporation, 1991.

Cookies Rule!!!

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