Thursday, 5 May 2011

A Warm Welcome to Ina's Garden Once Again

I am a huge fan of Ian Garten, aka the Barefoot Contessa. I love her recipes and the relaxed and welcoming entertaining lifestyle she promotes, as well as the sheer joie de vivre she exudes. So, I’ve joined up with a group of like-minded bloggers to form the newest blog hop group on the web, Ina’s Garden. Together we will be celebrating all things Ina by cooking and discussing her recipes and sharing our experiences. To read more about the group and how it will work, please click here.  Allow me to introduce my fellow co-hosts:

Chaya of Comfy Cook's Kosher Kitchen and Bizzy B Bakes
Louanne of Louanne’s Kitchen 
Mia of Bright Morning Star
, Peggy of Pantry RevisitedYummy Chunklet

In our first post, we linked up our experiences with Ina’s Orange Poundcake, which everyone seemed to agree, was absolutely delicious! This time we are sharing our experiences with Ina’s Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars. The recipe is on  Yummy Chunklet’s Blog, here. The linky will be open for several days, so even if you haven’t made the recipe already, there is still plenty of time to do so, and link up.

Next time we meet, on May 19th, we will be linking up based on a theme. Our first theme choice, by Chaya of Comfy Cook's Kosher Kitchen and Bizzy B Bakes is ‘Pasta with Pizzaz’. You can choose any of Ina Garten’s fabulous pasta recipes, and do a blog post round your experience of making it. We can’t wait to see which one of Ina’s fabulous pasta recipes you will choose!

But for now, here is my (very delicious and enjoyable) experience of making Ina Garten’s Peanut Butter and Jelly Bars.

These wonderful squares are totally and completely addictive. Crunchy delicious peanut butter and chopped nuts enveloping your favourite jam - how bad can that be? (Unless you have a nut allergy in which case I apologise unreservedly!)

They are relatively easy to put together. The cake-y base is spread over the bottom of the greased and lined pan. This can be tricky, but it’s well worth persevering. (I used a butter knife.) Then the jam is spread over top of that. Ina calls for raspberry - I used strawberry, and I understand from others in the group that really, any flavour you like works well. 

The remaining cake-y mixture becomes the topping and is simply dolloped over top of the jam. It spreads easily by itself to become a proper top.

I was worried, but Ina says it will spread, and it does. You sprinkle chopped roasted salted peanuts over top of this to contribute to the ambrosia these bars become.

One proviso, wait until the bars are cool before you try to slice them. Actually they are so good you could just scoop them out of the pan, warm, and eat them with a spoon (and it’s not very often I say something like that!), but it’s far nicer to wait and cut them into lovely manageable squares (think small, they are unbelievably rich!).

I will definitely make these again. They are amazing!! If you haven’t made these little gems already, please consider joining us and linking up - and if you have, please do link up your experiences here.  (Please note, the linky opens automatically at midnight on Wednesday.)

We do ask that as a courtesy, you link back in your post to whichever host site you have linked to. It’s good blog hop etiquette and it allows others to find one of the main Ina’s Garden posts and join in the fun. A simple, ‘Shared with Ina’s Garden at (insert the name of whichever blog you have linked to, along with a link to their Ina’s Garden post here)’ is absolutely fine.

Don’t forget to join us again on May 19th for Pasta with Pizzaz - any of Ina’s wonderful pasta recipes are perfect to share!

1 comment:

  1. These sound wonderful, April. I think I would probably choose either raspberry or apricot jam :-)

    Sue xo


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