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THE SWEETER SIDE

Do you want something that is so good its gone in a flash? I like to take something sweet that can be eaten with your fingers, when we attend a BBQ or family gathering. Try the s’mores bars that are fun and colorful.  – Pat

PEANUT BUTTER S’MORE BARS

1 tube (16 1/2 oz.) refrigerated peanut butter
cookie dough

3 1/2 cups miniature marshmallows

3/4 cup milk chocolate chips

2 teaspoons shortening

1 1/2 cups milk chocolate M&Ms

Let dough stand at room temperature for 5-10 minutes to soften. Cut into 24 slices. Arrange side by side in an ungreased 13×9-inch baking pan. Pat together to close gaps.  Bake at 350 for 18-20 minutes or until lightly browned and edges are firm. Sprinkle with marshmallows and bake 2-3 minutes longer or until marshmallows are puffy. In a microwave, melt chocolate chips and shortening and stir until smooth. Sprinkle M&Ms over marshmallow layer and drizzle with melted chocolate. Chill until set before cutting. Yield: 2 dozen.

CHEWY PECAN PIE BARS

1/4 cup butter, melted

2 cups packed brown sugar

2/3 cup all-purpose flour

4 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

2 cups chopped pecans

confectioners sugar

Pour butter into a 13x9x2-inch baking pan. Set aside. Combine brown sugar, flour, eggs, vanilla, baking soda and salt in a mixing bowl and mix well. Stir in pecans. Spread over butter.  Bake at 350 degrees for 30-35 minutes. Remove from the oven and immediately dust with confectioners sugar. Cool before cutting. Yield: 2 dozen.

SOUR CREAM RAISIN SQUARES

1 cup butter, softened

1 cup packed brown sugar

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 cups quick-cooking oats

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/8 teaspoon salt

FILLING

4 egg yolks

2 cups (16 oz.) sour cream

1 1/2 cups raisins

1 cup sugar

1 tablespoons cornstarch

Cream the butter and brown sugar in a mixing bowl. Beat in flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda and salt (mixture will be crumbly). Set aside 2 cups. Pat remaining crumbs into a greased 13x9x2-inch baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Cool. Meanwhile, combine the filling ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring constantly for 5-8 minutes. Pour over crust and sprinkle with reserved crumbs. Return to the oven for 15 minutes. Yield: 12 to 16 servings.

APPLE SNACK SQUARES

2 cups sugar

2 eggs

3/4 cup vegetable oil

2 1/2 self-rising flour

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

3 cups diced peeled tart apples

1 cup chopped walnuts

3/4 cup butterscotch chips

Combine sugar, eggs and oil in a bowl and mix well. Stir in flour and cinnamon (batter will be thick). Stir in apples and nuts. Spread into a greased 13x9x2-inch baking pan. Sprinkle with chips. Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until golden a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean. Cool before cutting. Yield; 2 dozen.

QUICK TIPS

• Muffins can be eaten warm. Most other quick quick breads taste better the next day. Nut breads are better if stored 24 hours before serving.

• To make self-rising flour, mix 4 cups flour, 2 teaspoons salt and 2 tablespoons baking powder. Store in a tightly covered container.

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