My readers know that I often find myself deciding on a dish to make because I have an overabundance of something I bought at Costco! This week it was a large bag of cranberries, enough to make a double recipe of Merlot and Toasted Walnut Cranberry sauce and still have 7-8 cups left over (3 lbs of cranberries is a LOT) so I wanted to find a holiday type bar to use them with; hoping to freeze the results and have them for holiday giving.
I found a beautiful adaptation of another recipe and because I made them from goods on hand, have adapted that recipe a bit myself.This is my adaptation of a recipe from from Joy of Baking; I changed a couple of things but mostly I doubled the recipe and used dried ginger; I had it on hand and that was that! I did use the product I had just bought from the fabulous Savory Spice Shop so hoping that gives me a bit of a reprieve!
Absolutely beautiful bar; don’t think I’ve ever made a filling with such a deep red color; perfect for the holidays.
Ginger Cranberry Shortbread Bars
For the Cranberry Filling
- 5 cups of cranberries
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1/2 cup of brown sugar
- 2-3 tsp dry ginger (if using fresh, do 2 Tbsp.)
- 2 Tbsp of orange zest
- 1/2 cup water
- 2 teaspoon of vanilla extract
For the Shortbread Mixture
- 4 cups of flour
- 4 tablespoons of cornstarch
- pinch of salt
- 2 cup of butter
- 2/3 cup of brown sugar
- Preheat the oven to 350F and lightly grease an 9X13 inch pan with butter.
- Put cranberries, sugar, brown sugar, ginger, orange zest, water, and vanilla extract in a 2 quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and boil for 5 minutes until it becomes reduced and syrupy. Stir occasionally but be gentle with the berries as they should remain whole. Remove from heat and cool.
- Sift together in a separate bowl the flour, cornstarch and salt.
- Cream the butter with the brown sugar and vanilla. Slowly add in the flour mixture until just incorporated.
- Press two-thirds of the dough into the prepared pan. Evenly spread the cranberry filling, leaving 1/4 inch of space on the sides. Crumble the remaining dough over the top. My dough wasn't really crumbling; actually had to break off pieces and scatter over the top of the mixture.
- Bake for 30 minutes or until the top begins to brown around the edges. Cool on a wire rack, then cut and serve.