Saturday, June 16, 2012

Cranberry Bliss Bars

1 cup butter, softened
1 cup brown sugar  
1/3 cup granulated sugar
3 large eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon ground ginger
Zest from one orange, divided
3/4 cup dried sweetened cranberries
3/4 cup white chocolate chips

4 ounces cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons butter, softened
3 cups powdered sugar
1 teaspoon clear vanilla extract
Splash of milk

½ cup dried sweetened cranberries
½  cup white chocolate chips
Orange zest, reserved from bars

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees .  Butter and flour a 9 x 13 baking dish.

 With an electric mixer, beat together softened butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar for  3-5 minutes until light and fluffy.  Add eggs, vanilla, and orange zest.  (Reserve a pinch of the orange zest for the topping.)   Add the flour, baking powder, and ginger and beat just until dry ingredients are incorporated.   Fold in cranberries and white chocolate chips.

Spread the thick batter into your prepared pan. Bake 350 for 23-26 minutes until light brown at the edges. Don't overbake!  Cool completely.

For the frosting,  blend cream cheese and butter until fluffy.  Add vanilla and powdered  sugar and beat until fluffy.  Add a splash of milk if needed.  Spread evenly over bars.

Sprinkle cranberries, chocolate chips, and reserved orange zest over bars.   Cut into squares.  Gobble up.

*Original recipe is from Starbucks.  I've adapted copycat recipes from several I've seen online.*

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