These fancy double-glazed bars only look hard to make. They are sturdy enough to pack and ship.
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus more for pan
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 large eggs
1½ cups all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
1 cup white chocolate chips
½ cup dried cranberries
4 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups confectioners’ sugar
½ cup dried cranberries, chopped
½ cup white chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350°F. Lightly butter a 9-by-13-inch baking pan.
For base: In a large bowl with electric mixer on high speed beat butter and sugar until fluffy. Add vanilla and eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Stir in flour, baking powder, ginger, nutmeg and salt until combined. Stir in white chocolate and cranberries. Spread batter in prepared pan. Bake for 25 minutes, until light golden yet still slightly soft in the center. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
For frosting: In a large bowl with electric mixer on medium speed, beat cream cheese, lemon juice and vanilla until blended. Gradually beat in the confectioners’ sugar until blended and of spreading consistency. Spread the frosting evenly over cooled cake. Immediately scatter chopped cranberries on top of the frosting.
For drizzle: In a microwave or double boiler, melt white chocolate until smooth and of drizzling consistency. Drizzle over frosted bars.
TIP: Keep an eye on the bars at the end of their baking time, making sure not to overbake them. The center should still be soft.
From: Debbie Macomber’s Christmas Cookbook
Nancy’s Notes: Made December 2012, these were a big hit at the Aqua Arthritis class holiday potluck.