Monday, April 13, 2009

a baking quandary

bars for quandary

This is the picture of two cookie bars.

This is the story, or is it a question: Last summer, my friend Dana, in Virginia, had bumper crops of berries (didn't we all?) -- blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, blackberries. She thought she would make those cookie bars, very thin, dry, with a hint of fruitiness that we could only surmise was achieved by cooking the currents into a sweet paste, rolling out a cookie/cracker dough into a great rectangle, spreading the fruit paste over it, rolling out another sheet of cookie dough, placing it on top of the paste, then squashing them together some way, like a flattened sandwich. The fruit paste remains between the cookie layers, but is also, at least slightly, incorporated into them. These are not two halves filled with fruit. They cannot be separated like an oreo, nor even like a fig newton.

Dana brought back the smaller bar -- I didn't write down the name, but I think it's Sunshine -- from a vacation in Bequia this winter, and sent it to me. I had gotten the larger bar from a trip to Vermont country store -- they're made by Crawford and are called Garibaldi bars. Both of them fill the bill for what she was describing, but the small, Bequian bar is the better tasting.

So, my dear readers, any ideas how to accomplish this?

I asked Leo for some input, and his only suggestion was that after making the sandwich, the baker walk over the concoction with hob-nailed boots! He might have something there, however: Perhaps the way to get the oneness of the filling and dough is to prick it all over, kind of amalgamating the three different layers through friction!

What'choo think?

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