Recipe: Viennese Hazelnut Chocolate Raspberry Bars

 

Servings: 48 bars

Active Work Time: 45 minutes

Total Preparation Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Note: To blanch (peel) hazelnuts, roast them in a 350-degree oven in a single layer until you can smell them, 10 to 15 minutes. Rub the nuts, a handful at a time, in a towel until the peels fall off. Lift the nuts out carefully, shaking off any flakes of peel. You can find blanched, roasted hazelnuts at some gourmet shops. Be sure the egg whites in the hazelnut layer are at room temperature .

CHOCOLATE LAYER

1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

1 cup (about 2 1/2 ounces) finely ground toasted blanched hazelnuts

1/2 cup sugar

1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Dash sea salt

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted European-style butter

1 egg yolk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate, ground to a powder

1. Line the bottom and sides of a 13x9-inch baking pan with one sheet of parchment paper.

2. Blend the flour, hazelnuts, sugar, cinnamon and salt in a mixing bowl. Make a well in the center and cut in the butter in small pieces. Add the yolk and vanilla, then pour the chocolate over all.

3. Blend the ingredients together with your fingertips, then when it becomes a cohesive dough, knead gently into a ball.

4. With a fork or your fingertips, gently smooth the dough so it evenly covers the paper in the pan. Set the dough in the freezer to chill while you make the hazelnut layer.

HAZELNUT LAYER

3 egg whites, room temperature

3/4 cup granulated sugar

Dash salt

2 1/2 cups (about 7 1/2 ounces) coarsely ground toasted blanched hazelnuts

2 tablespoons strained lemon juice

1. Whisk the whites, sugar and salt together in a bowl until the whites are frothy and the sugar has dissolved, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the hazelnuts and blend with a fork, then blend in the lemon juice.

ASSEMBLY

2/3 cup seedless raspberry jam

2 ounces bittersweet or semisweet chocolate

1. Heat the oven to 350 degrees.

2. Remove the Chocolate Layer from the refrigerator and spread the jam evenly over the top, using the back of a spoon.

3. Spread the Hazelnut Layer evenly over the jam.

4. Bake on the lowest rack of the oven for 10 minutes, then bake in the center of the oven until golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes more.

5. Cut into bars while hot (if desired, first cut around the pan at the point where the edges start to darken and later discard these parts). Be careful not to cut through the paper. Cut the 13-inch side into 12 sections, then make 4 even cuts the other way. Cool in the pan.

6. Using the paper, lift the bars out of the pan, if possible.

7. Melt the chocolate and drizzle it in swirls over the top of the bars. After the chocolate has set, remove the bars from the paper and store them in an airtight tin or box. They will keep fresh in a cool place at least 1 week.

Each bar: 127 calories; 19 mg sodium; 51 mg cholesterol; 8 grams fat; 2 grams saturated fat; 14 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams protein; 0.91 gram fiber.

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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