Saturday, February 20, 2010

magic 7 layer bars - no baking talent required

magic 7 layer bar - 42So I was in one of those "I-need-to-bake-something" moods, but I didn't have the time to go all out like I typically would. I quickly tried to think of something that I could make in a jiffy, to at least satisfy this urge of mine. I ended up deliberating between a few cookie type bar recipes that I had stashed away in the ol' brain. I finally decided upon making the old fashioned "Magic Bars"... or wait, maybe they're "7 Layer Bars". To be quite honest, I'm not even sure what the differences are between the two, but I'm assuming they're for the most part interchangeable. Anyways, it didn't even matter because I technically made my "own" version of these. And that's basically overstating it, because these bars are essentially layers of crap piled one on top of another, and placed in an oven to melt together.

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The first and most important layer would be the graham cracker crust. This simple yet tasty layer will be the vehicle for which the other crap will be served upon.

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I used my 9x6.5 inch baking pan which I got from my mom. Okay- I actually just took it from her, but honestly it wasn't even like she was using it for anything. She said she used to use it when she was younger (a.k.a. probably predating my birth) when all she had was a small oven and this was the only pan that would fit. The reason I had my eye on this little bad boy was because it would perfectly make 1/2 the recipe of anything regarding a 9x13 inch pan (basically everything). This way I could (and currently was) making half of a recipe. I ended up keeping the full amount of graham cracker crumbs though (I mean- look at the picture closely and you'll be able to see how sparse the right side was compared to adjusted left). I need thick crust!

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And now comes the real science and talent to baking...

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A few handfulls of butterscotch chips, the remaining bag of white chocolate chips, a dash of walnuts, a sprinkle of shredded coconut, a drinking glass full of chocolate chips, and half a can of condensed sweetened milk. I told you baking was an art form!

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After a little bath in the oven, my separate layers of ingredients melded together and created what some may call a "magic bar" or a "7 layer bar".

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So how does something that is basically a bunch of random ingredients turn into a "bar"? Remember, there's no flour, sugar, butter, creaming, mixing, whipping- none of that nonsense.

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I would suppose these are mostly held together by the sweetened condensed milk (which I typically think is pretty gross) along with the fact that everything basically melted on top of one another.

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I mean- I'm not complaining or anything- because these sweet and gooey squares were delectable.

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All I'm sayin' is that in no way shape or form am I proud of being capable of pouring chocolate chips into a baking dish. These bars, although tasty on their own, will probably never be made again by these hands (yes- these hands that can now make homemade pie crust and cream butter and sugar like a pro will not be dumbed down with these magic bars).

---RECIPE---
Recipes vary, example being here. My own "recipe" (if I can even call it that) is below.

ingredients:
1+1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 stick of butter
1 cup butterscotch chips
1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup toasted, chopped walnuts
1 cup toasted, shredded coconut
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
14 oz sweetened condensed milk

directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. (Toast nuts and coconut if desired.)
1. Melt the butter and mix it with the graham cracker crumbs. Press the mixture into the bottom of a 9 x 13 inch pan.
2. Layer remaining ingredients over crust in any order. (The way I ordered them in the list is the order I placed them). Pour the condensed milk over the layers.
3. Bake for 25 to 30 minutes. Cool. Cut into bars.

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