I know it's not the season for mincemeat, but hey... when they're in bar-form and super tasty, anyone will gobble them up even though it's not Christmas. But I have some very good reasons for making these mincemeat bars...
Reason #1: it was snowing today (I know!! April 1st does not equal snow in a logical world :P) so I thought I may as well take advantage of the frigid weather and make some piping hot baked goodies.
Reason #2: since it's not mincemeat season Save-on-Foods was clearing out all their mincemeat (yup, I can't resist a great deal)
Reason #3: I love, love, love mincemeat... it's so good by itself or spread on toast (I know, I'm strange)
Anyways, I'll stop trying to justify my baking escapades and give you the recipe!
Recipe Adapted from TheBakingPan.com
Yields 24 bars
- 1 cup flour
- 1/4 tsp baking soda
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp cinnamon, ground
- 1/2 tsp cloves, ground
- 1/2 tsp allspice, ground
- 1/2 tsp nutmeg, ground
- 1 egg
- 2 tbsp butter, room temperature
- 3/4 cups brown sugar, packed
- 2 tbsp molasses
- 1/2 tsp rum extract
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 cup mincemeat
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1/2 cup pine-nuts (pecans or walnuts can be substituted)
- powdered sugar for dusting
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour a 13x9-inch baking pan (Note: I lined the pan with aluminum foil, leaving some over-hang on the sides of the tray. This provides "handles" for easy removal of the bars when they're finished baking)
2. Sift together the flour, baking soda, salt and spices. Set aside
3. In a separate bowl, combine egg, butter, brown sugar and molasses; mix well. Add in the rum and vanilla extract and mix; add in mincemeat, raisins and pine-nuts, continue mixing until well incorporated.
4. Pour the batter into the pan, and spread into an even layer. Bake in oven for 25-30 mins or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
5. Allow the bars to cool until warm, at room temperature; then, use a sifter to dust the bars with powdered sugar. Allow them to cool fully and then slice into 2 inch squares.
When spreading the batter into the pan, I was a bit worried that I wouldn't have enough. It looked like the batter was spread-out fairly thin and that the bars wouldn't be thick enough, but thankfully they rose to almost triple their height in the oven. In the end these bars were great! They tasted just like gingerbread, with mincemeat and pine-nuts studded throughout! I was so impressed that the rest of my family enjoyed it, even though they're not fans of mincemeat... I guess it was that good.