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Thursday, December 17, 2015

Peanut Butter Bars

I like to sometimes call these 'lunch lady' bars as they remind me of ones 
served back in elementary school.  I hope I make those ladies proud!

peanut butter bars (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

I spent all day last Saturday doing something I truly love...baking with my friends!  These girls, what can I not say about them?  We've been friends since before I can remember, 1st grade probably, and yes, all five of us have stayed friends ever since.

We all hail from the same small town, our parents know each other, we know every nook and crannie about each other, our families, our spouses, our kids...everything.  So to say these girls are important to me is an understatement.

Anyway, we also like to bake.

Well, some of us more than others.  Each year prior to Christmas we try and get together and make more Christmas junk food than we ever actually need.  There is always a miserable FAIL.  In fact I walked in the door that morning and one person who shall remain nameless was already utterly FAILING.

But we moved on and conquered.

Do you get together with family or friends to bake?  If you don't you should.  If anything for the laughs.  At one point I was crying over my frosted sugar cookies I was laughing so hard. The conversation took a turn that involved Thanksgiving and prostitutes.

Yes.  Thanksgiving AND prostitutes.

Don't you wish you would have been there?  A fly on the wall?  We think we are pretty hilarious.

I'm now wondering if anyone else thinks we are....

peanut butter bars (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

Alright, let's talk about these bars!

Oh boy, I love these peanut butter bars.  First off, I love peanut butter.  Secondly, I love bars. They are much less cumbersome than cookies.  All the work is done in one pan.  God bless that lady {assuming it was a woman} who one day poured all her batter in a baking pan and said, "we'll see if this works".

These bars remind me of ones that I was served growing up in school.  Sometimes referred to as 'lunch lady' bars.  Bars that are baked in a large jelly roll pan and then frosted with something delicious.

Yeah.  These fit the bill.

This recipe makes a LOT.  I sent a third of the pan to a friend's house, put one third in the freezer and reluctantly we ate the final third.  One night we put a dollup of vanilla ice cream on them.  Which proved to be the best idea of the year....or at least that is what someone in the house said.

Be prepared to dream about these at night and then wake up thinking about them again the morning. They are that good!

Peanut Butter Bars

1 c. butter, softened
2 c. sugar
1 c. peanut butter
2 eggs
1 t. vanilla extract
2 c. flour
1 t. baking powder
1 c. water
1/2 c. half and half

3/4 c. peanut butter
1/4 c. butter, softened
3 1/2 c. powdered sugar
1/8 c. half and half

1.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Grease a large jelly roll pan or two 9x13 pans.
2.  In a stand mixer cream together the butter, sugar and peanut butter.  Add in eggs, beating well, then add in vanilla.  Sift in flour and baking powder, alternating it with the water and half and half, beating well.
3.  Pour batter into the jelly roll pan, spreading evenly.  Bake 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
4.  In a large bowl beat peanut butter and butter to combine.  Beat in powdered sugar, with enough half and half to reach a spreading consistency.
5.  Frost the cake while still warm.  Allow to cool completely.  Keep covered for best storage.

peanut butter bars (sweetandsavoryfood.com)

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