I might be alone in this, but I had never heard of a “congo bar” and quite honestly, had no idea what set them apart from other cookie bars. The answer to that are the copious amounts of brown sugar! How could someone not like a cookie bar with lots of brown sugar?
For the March group of Bakin’ Friends, our secret ingredient was mint. Lately I seem to be rather uninspired and had a super hard time deciding what I was going to make. And then I came across this recipe for Congo Bars. Lots of brown sugar, 3 cups of whatever mix-ins you want: perfect!
My batch, since our ingredient was mint, included some mint chips, semi-sweet chocolate morsels, white chocolate chips, some mini chocolate chips and a small amount of mini marshmallow bits. Completely easy to throw together and super yummy. They get a sort of thick, chewy top and stay moist and chewy in the middle. Perfect combo! And they are perfect for using up leftover bags of chips and candies! You should make some – right now!
Source: Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice
Makes: one 13×9-inch pan; 20-24 bars
2/3 cup butter
2 cups & 2 tablespoons firmly packed brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
3 large eggs
2 & 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
2 & 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
3 cups of mix-ins (different flavored chocolate chips, candies, toffee pieces, coconut, etc. in any combination, just not over 3 cups)
1/2 cup nuts (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 13×9-inch baking pan with parchment paper or lightly grease.
2. Melt the butter in a medium-sized pot. Stir in the brown sugar. Add the salt and vanilla until well combined. Transfer to a mixing bowl.
3. Allow to cool slightly. Add in the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each and scraping down the sides of the bowl.
4. Stir in the baking powder and flour, then all of the chips/candy and nuts.
5. Pour batter into the prepared baking pan and spread edge to edge with a wet spatula.
6. Bake 30-32 minutes until risen and golden on top. (A toothpick inserted into the center won’t come out clean as the middle will still be gooey. It will set as it cools.)
7. Cool bars completely before cutting (best left overnight.) Store in an airtight container at room temp for up to 5 days.