APRICOT SQUARESThis Apricot Shortbread recipe has two steps. First prepare and lightly bake the shortbread crust and then pour the topping over the crust and bake the whole thing.
Crust1 cup flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 cup cold butter
Mix by hand or in a food processor until it resembles cornmeal. Pat into a 9 inch square pan and bake at 325-350 degrees until very light brown at the edges. Set aside. Note: Using a Pyrex (glass) pan will let you see how brown the crust is becoming while it bakes once the topping has been put on.
1 cup light brown sugar
1/3 cup flour (heaping) or 1/2 cup sift before measuring
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2/3 cup dried apricots (measure dry before simmering in water)
1/2 cup sliced almonds
Instructions for top:Simmer apricots in water for a few minutes until they are soft but not mushy. Drain, cool, and cut apricots into small pieces.
Sift flour and then measure it. Return measured flour to sifter. Add baking powder and salt.
Beat eggs with an electric beater until very frothy. Add sugar and vanilla and beat this mixture some more until it thickens a bit.
Stir in apricots and nuts by hand. Sift in dry ingredients and gently fold them into batter.
Pour batter over pre-baked crust. Bake at 325 to 350 degrees for about 25 minutes until golden brown and firm but not dried out. Cool and cut into squares.
Note: Whether or not you cool the crust before adding the top makes a difference. When the crust is cool before adding the top, the crust will be more cruchy like a shortbread cookie, and the top and bottom layer will be more distinct. When the crust is not cooled before adding the top, the crust will be softer, more melt-in-your mouth tender. Cooled somewhat is somewhere in between.
Family recipe origin unknown