Lately I’ve been doing some baking, which isn’t at all like me since I’m not a fan of the precise measuring and timing required for producing baked goods (really, I just don’t like following directions.) Plus it’s been crazy hot outside. But when the sweet tooth comes calling, I have practically no resistance. To keep our kitchen from getting too overheated during my temporary baking binge, I’ve been sticking to simple recipes. No complicated ingredients or fancy gadgets, minimum time in the oven (30 minutes or less) and no frosting either. Oh, and there’s another big bonus…only one pan to wash!
Here’s a look at my first attempt at baking Hello Dolly Bars, straight out of the oven.
Close-up view of the layered, sweet-gooey goodness.
Here’s the recipe just in case you’d like to bake something sweet, chewy, chocolately, buttery, crunchy and totally delectable…and quick too.
Hello Dolly Bars
1 stick butter
1 cup graham cracker crumbs (I add an extra 1/4 cup for a more substantial bottom crust)
1 cup chocolate chips (I like semi-sweet)
1 cup coconut (lightly packed)
1 cup nuts (I use pecans, chopped roughly into half pieces)
1 can condensed milk
Melt butter in bottom of 13×9 cake pan (you can do this part by placing the butter in the pan and into the oven while it’s preheating.) In order given, spread each ingredient. Do not stir. Bake at 350 for 20-30 minutes. Mark squares while warm. Refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
After baking a double batch (always like to make one to keep and one to share) I had two mini-tin cans leftover from the condensed milk used in the recipe. And it just so happens that I needed a couple of small containers for some feathers that I had floating around in my studio, so I recycled these tins into handy mini-storage buckets. My collage tin buckets were inspired by a project (Tinnies) created by the amazing artist, Lisa Kaus.
For one of my cans I used a rusty binder clip to attach a wire handle instead of punching holes through the tin. Coming up with different options is all part of the fun for me.
It’ s good to get new ideas from other artists and it’s even better to take this inspiration and give it your own spin and style. Learning and sharing ideas, inspiration, techniques – this exchange can often spark more creativity and good energy to flow.