Ingredients:

Raspberry Shortbread Bars:

2 cups (260 grams) all-purpose flour

1/4 teaspoon (1 gram) salt

1 cup (225 grams) butter, at room temperature

1/3 cup (75 grams) light brown sugar

1 teaspoon (4 grams) pure vanilla extract

Raspberry Filling:

1 cup (240 ml/300 grams) raspberry jam (store bought or homemade)


Instructions:

Raspberry Shortbread Bars: Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C) and place the oven rack in the center of the oven. Butter (or spray with a non stick cooking spray) a 9 inch (23 cm) square baking pan.

Shortbreads: In a separate bowl whisk the flour with the salt.

In the bowl of your electric stand mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment (or with a hand mixer), beat the butter until smooth. Add the sugar and vanilla extract and beat, on medium speed, until creamy and smooth. Add the flour mixture and beat just until incorporated and you have clumps of batter (not a solid ball of dough).

Evenly press about two-thirds (370 grams) of the shortbread onto the bottom of the prepared pan. Lightly prick with the tines of a fork. Bake the shortbread about 16 - 18 minutes or until light brown. Remove from oven and evenly spread the raspberry jam over the shortbread base, leaving a 1/4 inch (.5 cm) border.

With the remaining shortbread dough, using your fingers, crumble it over the top of the raspberry jam. Then lightly press the dough into the jam.

Bake for about 25 - 30 minutes, or until golden brown on top. Remove from oven, place on a wire rack, and while still warm, cut into 16 squares. Allow to cool completely in pan. The bars can be covered and stored in the refrigerator for about five days, or they can be frozen.

Makes about 16 servings.


Description:

A shortbread batter is so versatile. Sometimes it's pressed into a tart or cake pan or used to make cut out cookies. Other times it's rolled into a log and used to make slice and bake cookies. But for this recipe we are making delicious Raspberry Shortbread Bars. Just think, two buttery layers of sweet shortbread sandwiched together with a tart and tangy raspberry jam. A match made in heaven.

For these shortbread bars I like to prebake the bottom layer of shortbread. That way the bottom crust stays wonderfully crisp. Then, after spreading the raspberry jam over the baked crust, I like to scatter clumps of the batter over the jam, instead of having a solid layer of shortbread. I do this because I think it looks quite appealing, but also so you can easily see that there is a layer of raspberry jam underneath.

For the jam, you can use either a good quality store bought raspberry jam (or preserve), or you can make your own. I have a quick and easy recipe, with a video, on how to make your own refrigerator raspberry jam. I like to make the jam at least the day before I make these shortbread bars as I think the flavor improves overnight. And really, you could replace the raspberry jam with another flavor of jam or you could even mix some apricot jam (preserves) into the raspberry jam to make Raspberry Apricot Shortbread Bars.