Blueberry & Rose Almond Bars
There was nothing for it, with a fridge load of blueberries in need of using up, I just had to do some baking. Interrogating my books, via Eat Your Books, two recipes appealed: Dan Lepard’s blueberry almond bar from Short and Sweet and blueberry streusel muffins from Tea with Bea. It was a tough choice, but in the end Dan won out. Shockingly, chocolate did not feature in this recipe, so I added some. I also decided to cook the blueberries in rose syrup, as I’d recently made another batch. I tried to upscale the recipe a little as I didn’t have the required 20 cm tin.
This is how I did it:
- Washed 300g blueberries and put them in a pan.
- Added 100ml of rose syrup and 25g caster sugar.
- Bought the mixture to a gentle simmer.
- Mixed 2 rounded tsp of arrowroot in about 40ml water.
- Added this and stirred well, continuing to simmer for about 5 minutes, until the mixture had thickened and was a very deep blue.
- Sifted 180g flour (80g spelt, 100g white) into a bowl with 3/4 tsp baking powder.
- Added 60g ground almonds and 75g cardamom sugar (caster).
- Cut 110g unsalted butter into pieces and rubbed this into the flour.
- Added 1 duck egg and mixed.
- Poured this into a 21cm square tin lined with baking parchment and pressed it flat.
- Poured 50ml milk into a small pan.
- Added 2 tsp honey, 100g light brown sugar, 75g flaked almonds, 25g ground almonds and a drop of almond extract.
- Bought mixture to a simmer and cooked for a few minutes until mixture thickened slightly.
- Took off the heat and added 30g dark chocolate (G&B Maya Gold).
- Spooned the blueberry compote over the biscuit base.
- Spooned the almond caramel over the blueberries.
- Baked at 180C for 30 minutes.
The blueberry and caramel mixtures amalgamated completely during cooking, which was a little disappointing. But that was where the disappointment ended. They tasted fruity and the almond shortbread base was delicious and just the right texture, with the caramel adding just the right amount of sweetness. Remarkably some of these survived for several days and the last ones tasted just as good as the first.