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They call them magic cookie bars, Hello Dolly bars, seven-layer bars. Call them what you like, they’re old-fashioned deliciousness baked up in a pan. Being the small batch kat I am, I like to bake a half portion in an 8″ square. It’s just enough to bring a bit of sweetness to the day without going overboard.

Today, I added Valrhona Dulceys to to the mix. It’s 32% blond chocolate–“creamy and toasty,” so says the bag. Yes, and almost vaguely salty, like fine caramel. You can find them at Whole Foods. Or go nuts as I did and buy a 3 kg bag from Amazon. Hey, go big or go home, right? Life’s short, enjoy the ride. Or at least make it a little sweeter when you can.

KATTY’S MAGIC COOKIE BARS

¼ cup butter, melted
¾ cup graham cracker crumbs
sprinkle of cinnamon
¼ cup chopped dark chocolate (I used Valrhona Guanaja 70%)
¼ cup chopped Valrhona Dulceys (32% blond chocolate)
about ¾ cup flaked coconut—enough to make a generous coconut “snow” layer over the graham crumbs and butter
½ cup chopped pecans (I used ½ pecans, ½ sliced almonds today)
½ (14 oz.) can sweetened condensed milk (SCM)
½ teaspoon vanilla extract to mix into the SCM

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Butter an 8 x 8″ baking dish. Melt butter, then sprinkle graham cracker crumbs evenly over the butter. Add a sprinkle of cinnamon. Cover this layer completely with coconut, then nuts and chocolate. Stir 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract into SCM, then pour evenly over the pan.

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Bake 25 to 30 minutes at 350 degrees F . Run a knife around the outside of the pan while still warm. Cool. Cut into bars or diamonds.

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What are you waiting for? Dig in–it’s time to make the magic happen. CHOP-CHOP!

 

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