I'm always looking for new dessert recipes, and this one combines several of my favorite flavors.
- 3/4 cup chopped maraschino cherries
- 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour, divided
- 1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 cup butter, softened
- 1-1/2 cups packed brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1-1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- 3/4 cup miniature chocolate chips
- 1-1/3 cups confectioners' sugar
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- In a small bowl, toss cherries with 1/4 cup flour; set aside. In a large bowl, beat cream cheese, butter and brown sugar until smooth. Beat in egg and honey. Combine the baking powder, salt, cinnamon, nutmeg and remaining flour; add to creamed mixture. Stir in nuts, chocolate chips and reserved cherries.
- Spread into a greased 15-in. x 10-in. x 1-in. baking pan. Bake at 350° for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown. In a small bowl, combine the confectioners' sugar, milk and vanilla until smooth; drizzle over warm bars. Cool on a wire rack for 1 hour. Yield: 4 dozen.
Originally published as Fruit 'n' Nut Spice Bars in Country October/November 2003, p51
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