"It's About Time: Great Recipes for Everyday Life," the first book from award-winning Boston chef Michael Schlow, is filled with sophisticated recipes that are surprisingly easy for cooks at home to pull off.
The book is divided into eight "times," or moods, such as "How to Get the Family Together" and "Time to Look Like a Pro." Recipes are accompanied by a brief essay from Schlow.
I can't tell you why these are called secret agent raspberry bars without putting my life in jeopardy; I know it all sounds very cloak and dagger. Still, the name alone will ensure your kids love helping you make these bars. What I can tell you is that my sister-in-law, Sue, gave me the recipe, and it is next to impossible to eat just one. When I am placed in charge of these, I cut the squares even bigger. Then I can still say, "I was good, I only ate two."
Makes about 30 squares
¾ cup softened butter
½ cup sugar
1 ¾ cups flour
1/3 cup chopped pecans
¼ teaspoon almond extract
¼ teaspoon salt
8 ounces (1 cup) seedless raspberry preserves
½ cup sweetened, flaked coconut
Preheat oven to 350° F.
Using mixer, beat together butter and sugar at medium speed.
Add flour and mix well. Add chopped pecans, almond extract, and salt, stirring until the flour mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
Reserve 1 cup of the flour mixture and press the remainder into the bottom of an ungreased 9x13-inch baking dish.
Spread raspberry preserves evenly over the crust.
Sprinkle the reserved flour mixture over the preserves.
Sprinkle the coconut on top.
Bake until the crust and topping are golden, 25 to 30 minutes. Let cool and cut into squares.
Recipe from "It's About Time," by Michael Schlow