Tag Archives: bar cookies

Caramel Crumb Bars


While many others in the Northern Hemisphere are enjoying the first snow of the season, I’m admiring from afar, surprised by our own low temperatures which have hovered near 40 on a few nights. It’s been enough to coerce me to turn on the heater and take the chill off the house, but not more than that, because it’s nice to have some sense of a change of seasons.

Our family has never decorated our home for Christmas until a week or so before the holiday, so the days immediately following Thanksgiving have always presented a time to consider the simplicity of the season. We won’t venture down to our favorite tree lot until a week or so before Christmas, and decorations will remain in their boxes until then. I’ve wondered whether to wait even longer this year since our youngest isn’t expected home for the semester break until the 19th.

Decisions, decisions.

In the meantime, I’m happy to have been invited again to participate in a holiday cookie fest of with a group of the loveliest people. Two years ago, we took on Gourmet and  Christmas cookies from 40 years of publication. Last year, it was Bon Appetit, and 12 cookie recipes in 12 days. This year, we’re choosing from Saveur’s collection of Christmas Cookies, and presenting one a week.

Each year, I’ve had some excuse for my lack of follow through on the task, whether it was an overwhelming home remodel, an adjustment to working life after three years of retirement, or in the case of this year, knee surgery with lots of physical therapy to follow.   We’ll see how it goes.

This year, our group is comprised of Courtney of Coco Cooks,  Andrea of Andrea’s Recipes, Claire of The Barefoot Kitchen, Di of Di’s Kitchen Notebook, Judy of No Fear Entertaining, Michelle of Big Black Dogs, RJ of Flamingo Musings, Sandy of At the Baker’s Bench, and Tiffany of The Nesting Project.


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Apricot Cookie Tarts

Day 6 of The 12 Days of Cookies brings a recipe featured in the September 1966 issue of Gourmet magazine.  In 1966, I was in the 4th grade at John F. Farragut School in Rota, Spain where my father was stationed.  It was our second year there of a four year assignment and the first that we lived on base.  Days were full of playtime outside after school until we were called in for dinner, and weather very much like what we enjoy here in San Diego.  I’d have another year with my best childhood friend who lived three houses up the street, and two to enjoy some of the most pleasantly memorable years of my life.

Apricots have always been something special to me, and although I prefer them ripe from the tree, I grew up loving them right from the can.  This recipe calls for dried apricots simmered in a simple syrup spiked with a bit of liqueur.  Regardless of the form they take, apricots will always be something I enjoy — especially baked between layers of a brown sugar crumble.  Nothing compares to their perfectly sweet tartness.

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