Can you believe it is May now?! Memorial Day is only a few weeks away and summer is so close I can taste it! This winter was pretty brutal in the Northeast and I am just now feeling like myself again. The cold and the snow tends to put me in complete hermit mode. Good for my baking blog, not so good for my real life. Now I am ready for longer days, dates with friends, flip-flops and spending all of my money on frozen yogurt. I’m also ready to plan my summer calendar and travel schedule.
Living in New York, I’ve found that we spend most of our summer weekends out of the city and as a result away from my kitchen. This is pretty normal for Manhattanites. Come to the city for the 4th of July and you should be able to get almost any dinner reservation you could imagine. You also will sweat your way from place to place and especially waiting for a subway. While I’m a homebody at heart, I have a definite preference for the beach or a pool during those days.
All of this means that most of my cooking and baking from May through the end of August takes place at night after work. On a good day, I’ll be home by 7. Given that I am 8626 years old and get into bed before 10pm, that means only three real hours of kitchen time. I’ve gotten pretty good at coming up with quick dinners for these nights (when in doubt, make eggs), but baking in that time span as well can be a bit more challenging. Baking is like therapy for me, not something I like to rush. This means planning ahead, making desserts that aren’t overly complicated, and making desserts that don’t require an insane amount of oven time (air conditioning isn’t NYC’s best quality). Think cookies, brownies, and ice cream desserts.
These Sweet and Salty White Chocolate Blondies are the perfect dessert for baking under a time constraint. They are pretty easy to make and take only 30 minutes to bake. Plus, they are easy to wrap up and bring to a summer barbeque or gathering. The texture has a wonderful chew to it and there is a lovely sweetness and caramel-like flavor from the white chocolate melted in the batter. Some chocolate chips and pretzel pieces add crunch and my favorite salty sweet taste combo.
Start by melting butter and some of your white chocolate chips over low-medium heat
Stir occasionally; Don’t worry if your butter and chocolate separate, you can fold them together to combine
Once completely melted, set white chocolate mixture aside
Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt; set aside
In a large bowl, beat together sugars, eggs and vanilla until well-combined
Reduce speed of mixer to medium and add white chocolate mixture
Stir in the dry ingredients until well-combined
Stir in white and semi-sweet chocolate chips and pretzels
Pour batter into pan lined with wax paper and greased
Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown and a knife comes out clean; allow to cool before slicing
Sweet & Salty White Chocolate Blondies
Yield: Serves 24-36 depending on size
- 6 ounces white chocolate (any form, to melt)
- 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
- 1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 3/4 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 cup packed light brown sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
- 1 cup salted pretzel pieces
- 1/2 cup milk chocolate chips
- 1/4 cup white chocolate chips (for mix-in)
- Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
- Line a 9×13 pan with wax paper and grease; set aside
- Melting butter and white chocolate over low-medium heat
- Stir occasionally; donâ€™t worry if your butter and chocolate separate, you can fold them together to combine
- Once completely melted, set white chocolate mixture aside
- Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt; set aside
- In a large bowl, beat together sugars, eggs and vanilla until well-combined
- Reduce mixer speed to medium and add melted white chocolate mixture
- Stir in the dry ingredients until well-combined
- Stir in white and semi-sweet chocolate chips and pretzels
- Pour batter into prepared baking pan
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden brown and a knife comes out clean; allow to cool before slicing
Are you taking any weekend trips this summer?