06 December 2011

Blondies with Dried Apricots, Macadamia Nuts and White Chocolate

This is my new favorite baking recipe, which is saying a lot considering my complete and stubborn commitment to all things chocolate. These may not be made with chocolate (did you know that white chocolate isn't really chocolate? it's just the fat from the cocoa bean, combined with some milk, sugar and salt), but they're delicious. The recipe is from a brownie cookbook that my sister gave me a few years ago. Thanks to the tangy chunks of dried apricot, they aren't overpoweringly sweet, and the combination of the creamy white chocolate and the buttery, crunchy macadamia nuts is out of this world. These blondies lasted less than a single day in my house, so be warned: they are highly, highly addictive!

12 oz. white chocolate
3 oz. unsalted butter
1 tsp. vanilla extract
3 eggs, beaten
2/3 cup light brown sugar
1 cup self-rising flour
3/4 cup macadamia nuts, coarsely chopped
1/2 cup dried apricots, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 375 degrees
Lightly grease 11 in x 7 in baking pan (8.5 in. by 8.5 in. works too),
and line the with baking parchment.
Chop half the white chocolate into small chunks.
Melt the remaining chocolate with the butter in a small pan over very low heat and stir until melted. Remove from heat and stir in the vanilla extract.
Whisk the eggs and sugar together in a large bowl until pale. Beat in the melted chocolate mixture. Fold in flour evenly, then stir in the macadamia nuts, apricots, and chopped chocolate.
Spoon into the prepared pan and smooth the top level.
Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until firm and golden brown.
Leave to cool in pan. Turn out when cold and cut into square or triangles.

Approximately 20 blondies

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