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Star Bars shine

News-Times, News-Times
Published 8:00 pm, Monday, August 2, 2004
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All of us adventurous chefs know that all it takes to turn your bars into stars is a new cookie cutter and the courage to redefine your boundaries!

CHOCOLATE PEANUT BUTTER STAR BARS 1 1/3 cup smooth or crunchy peanut butter

2/3 cup sugar

2 tablespoons flour

2 egg whites

1 1/4 cup chopped walnuts

Two 8-ounce milk chocolate bars

Here's how you do it...

Combine peanut butter, sugar, flour and egg whites in a large bowl, and blend until creamy. Stir in 3/4 cup of walnuts and press the mixture into the bottom of a lightly greased 9-by-13-inch baking pan. Bake at 350 for 10 to 12 minutes until lightly browned at the edges, and set aside. Break one chocolate bar into 1-inch pieces and sprinkle it over the top of the batter in the pan and return the pan to the oven for another minute or so, until the chocolate is melted. Then remove the pan from the oven, spread the melted chocolate across the pan evenly, and let cool. Chop the remaining chocolate bar into pieces and sprinkle it and the remaining walnuts over the top of the pan. Cool in the pan, then cut into star bars with a star-shaped cookie cutter.

IRON STAR BARS

1/3 cup butter or margarine

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup light molasses

1 egg

1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour

1/2 cup nonfat dry milk

1/4 cup toasted wheat germ

1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground ginger

1/2 cup milk, whole or skim

1 cup quick-cooking rolled oats

1 cup dark raisins

1/2 cup golden raisins

1 cup sliced pecans

Here's how you do it...

Cream butter, sugar and molasses. Add the egg and beat until smooth. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, dry milk, wheat germ, baking powder, baking soda, salt and ginger and mix lightly. Blend the dry ingredients, alternating with the liquid milk, into the butter mixture. Stir in the oats, raisins and half of the pecans. Pour the batter into a greased baking pan, sprinkle with the remaining almonds and bake at 350 for about 20 minutes or until lightly golden around the edges. Let cool in pan, then cut into star bars with a star-shaped cookie cutter.

SQUASH STAR BARS

1 cup vegetable oil

4 eggs

2 cups sugar

2 cups pureed butternut squash

1 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons allspice

2 cups flour

Frosting:

3 ounces cream cheese, softened

6 tablespoons butter

1 teaspoon milk

1 teaspoon vanilla

2 cups powdered sugar

Here's how you do it...

In a large mixing bowl, combine oil, eggs and sugar. Add the squash, baking soda, salt, baking powder, allspice and flour and blend until creamy. Pour batter into an ungreased 15-by-10-inch jellyroll pan. Bake at 350 for 20 to 25 minutes, then let cool to room temperature. To make the frosting, cream together cream cheese, butter, milk, vanilla and the powdered sugar. Frost the cooled cookie and cut into star bars using a star-shaped cookie cutter.