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Recipe: Salted Honey Bars With Thyme

This herbaceous take on a blondie is crispy, gooey and impossible to stop eating

By The Washington Post | November 18, 2021 | Category

Photo by Tom McCorkle. Food styling Lisa Cherkasky
Photo by Tom McCorkle. Food styling Lisa Cherkasky

Salted Honey Bars With Thyme

24 servings

These bars are like caramelized blondies with crisped edges and a chewy interior. The thyme adds an interesting depth of flavour.

In testing, we found the baked slab tends to sink in the middle; that's okay. (We got a bit less sink when using a Pyrex dish, but a metal pan is fine, too.) To take advantage of that lovely rim and gooey centre, we recommend cutting these into long, slender pieces so you get the best of both textures. At 24 servings the bars are rich and generous, so feel free to cut them smaller if you prefer.

Because the batter is so thick, we found it easier to use a stand mixer rather than blending it by hand per the directions.

Make Ahead:

The bars, tightly wrapped or in an airtight container, can be stored at room temperature for several days. For long-term cold storage, wrap the bars tightly in plastic wrap and freeze for up to several months.

Adapted from "Sticky Fingers, Green Thumb," by Hayley McKee (Hardie Grant Books, 2018).

Ingredients

1/2 cup honey

1/4 cup chopped fresh thyme leaves (may substitute sage or rosemary)

2 cups sugar

1 1/2 cups grapeseed oil

2 large eggs

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon flaky sea salt, plus more for sprinkling

4 cups flour

1 cup slivered almonds (may substitute chopped nuts of your choice)

Steps

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with parchment paper, leaving some overhang on the sides for easy removal.

Use a whisk to blend the honey and thyme in a mixing bowl. Add the sugar, oil and eggs; beat until frothy and well incorporated. Switch to a flexible spatula, then fold in the baking soda, the teaspoon of salt and a third of the flour. Add the remaining flour a little at a time until it all comes together in a thick, uniform batter. Stir in the almonds. (After you add the nuts, you might need to use your hands to distribute them evenly and finish combining the batter.)

Transfer the mixture to the pan, spreading it in an even layer. Bake (middle rack) for 35 to 40 minutes until dark golden brown, turning the pan from front to back halfway through.

Let the slab cool slightly in the pan before lifting it out (using the parchment to do so) and transferring it to a wire rack. When still slightly warm or completely cool, cut into 24 bars and sprinkle a little extra sea salt over them before serving.

Written by Becky Krystal, (c) 2018, The Washington Post.