7 Layer Almond Delight Bars
I hope everyone had a great weekend! I spent about five hours on Saturday making a recipe from my absolute favorite chef, Amanda Cohen. She has a vegetable centric restaurant in NYC called Dirt Candy. I went a few times when I was living in NY and have been dying to go back. Her recipes are delicious, complex, creative and unlike any other food I've ever had. If you couldn't already tell, she is a great inspiration to me. I picked up a copy of her cookbook the other day and decided to make her dim sum inspired roasted carrot buns with carrot hoisin sauce and carrot halvah. It was a challenge to make, but I'm so glad I did. It was really enlightening to experience how much time and effort goes into each recipe. I'm going back to the restaurant in June for my 30th birthday and I'm so, so excited.
Speaking of inspiration, I had an almond croissant the other day from a local bakery and I was quite a happy lady. The flakey, buttery layers and the moist almond filling are just heavenly. Unfortunately, every morning since I've had it I have been craving another. I sure do wish I could have one every day, but I know my daily green shake is a better choice....sigh.
The flavors of that almond croissant inspired me to create an almond themed dessert. I came up with these delicious 7 layer bars. Now, these are not your typical 7 layer bars. There are loads of almond flavor in every layered bite! The first layer is a homemade buttery, moist almond cookie made with only 4 ingredients. Pieces of almond paste are placed over the cookie and sweetened condensed milk is poured over both layers. The almond paste and the sweetened condensed milk combine to create a layer similar to the almond layer in a croissant. Do I have you on board yet? The rest of the bar is comprised of toasted almond slices, peanut butter chips and coconut. Lastly, chocolate is drizzled over the top.
I tested this recipe with semi-sweet chocolate chips, butterscotch chips and peanut butter chips. My husband and I decided we liked the peanut butter the best with the semi-sweet chocolate coming in second place. The butterscotch was just too overpowering. Feel free to do some experimenting of your own if you're feeling extra creative!
7 Layer Almond Delight Bars
7 layer almond bars with almond flavor in every bite
Makes: 9 bars
- 2 cups (192 grams) almond meal/flour
- 6 tablespoons (85 grams) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled
- 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/4 cup (50 grams) granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons almond paste
- 1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
- 1 cup toasted sliced almonds
- 1/2 cup peanut butter chips (or your preferred chip)
- 1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
- 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips, melted
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 8 x 8 pan with nonstick cooking spray
- Add the melted butter, almond flour, almond extract and granulated sugar to a medium bowl and mix until combined
- Add the mixture to the pan and press down with your hands until you have an even layer
- Tear off small pieces of the almond paste and place over the first layer
- Now pour the sweetened condensed milk over the first two layers and carefully spread with a spatula
- Sprinkle almonds over the condensed milk then layer the peanut butter chips over the almonds
- Lastly add the coconut to top off the bars. Place in the oven and bake for 20 - 25 minutes until the coconut is a light golden brown
- Let the bars cool completely in the pan before drizzling the chocolate over and cutting