Saturday, August 3, 2013

Caramel Chocolate Oatmeal Bars of Delight

I've been thinking/dreaming about these bars since June.

We are now in the beginning of August, and the middle of summer

(sunflower time!)

(and my first photoshop piece of work ever... see below! I love it!  What do you think??)

Anyway, back to bars... that's well over 6 weeks of thinking about them.

I wondered what they would look like first out of the oven (the wait is now over)

Today, was the day to put dreaming into action and create my kind of delicious in the kitchen.

Our 3 year old was asleep, the men of the family were out running chores... I was in the kitchen with the new screen door that my darling husband attached for me!  (For the unhappy story of me cooking in the kitchen before screen door, click here)

Then the boys came back from their evidenced by this photo by the screen door.

But for  most of the afternoon, there was a soft breeze flowing through the kitchen, there was quiet, I was alone and I was cooking... butter, oats, sugar.  I couldn't be happier.

Caramel Chocolate Oatmeal Bars of Delight

1 and 1/2 cups of all purpose flour
1 and 1/2 cups of oats
1 cup of brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
9 tablespoons of melted butter
12 ounces of semi-sweet chocolate chips
40 soft caramel candies (or lollies for my fellow Australians)
6 teaspoons of milk or cream

1) Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
2) Mix the flour, oats, sugar, baking soda and salt in a large bowl.  
3) Melt the butter, and then pour it into the oats mixture.  Stir it until it forms a soft, crumbly, delicious dough.  Eat some if you need to. I did. 
4) Pour about 3/4 into a 9 x 13 baking dish and press down.
5) Pop it in the oven for 13 minutes, until lightly golden.
6) In the mean time, unwrap all those caramel lollies and melt in the microwave with milk or cream. If you are like me, you have to wait until your husband and son return with the lollies before you can proceed with this step.  My crust was already cooked and waiting.  No harm done!
7) Sprinkle choccy chips over the baked crust, and then pour the melted caramel mixture on top.  Sprinkle the remaining crumbly oat mixture on top, and pop it back in the oven for another 15-20 minutes, until golden.
8) Let stand for a couple of hours until the caramel is cooled, if you can stand it!  (Can you tell by the picture below, I couldn't wait... hot chocolate and caramel caught on my knife are a dead giveaway)

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