Cardamom Raspberry Bars

Time1 hour
YieldsMakes 2 dozen
Cardamom raspberry bars
(Silvia Razgova / For The Times; prop styling by Leah Choi)
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Cardamom shines in these chewy, brown sugar blondies rippled with homemade raspberry jam. Pastry chef Meadow Ramsey’s “refrigerator jam” is meant to be kept cold, not canned, so you use it quickly, especially in these bars. But if it’s easier, store-bought raspberry jam is great too. Just make sure to buy one that is thick and full of fruit; loose jelly or runny preserves will be absorbed too much into the dough.


Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-by-13-inch metal baking pan, then line the bottom and two long sides with a sheet of parchment paper; grease the paper.


In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cardamom, baking powder and baking soda. In a large bowl, whisk together the melted butter, both sugars and the salt. Add the eggs and yolk and vanilla and whisk until smooth. Using a sieve, sift half the dry ingredients over the batter, then use a wooden spoon or silicone spatula to stir until almost combined. Sift in the remaining dry ingredients and stir until the dough combines and there are no more dry patches of flour visible.


Scrape the dough into the prepared baking pan and spread into the corners and in an even layer. Fill a resealable plastic bag with the raspberry jam, then cut one corner off. Pipe the jam in about six or seven 1-inch-thick rows widthwise over the dough (or dollop the jam evenly over the dough with a spoon). Run a thin-bladed knife or a toothpick through the surface of the batter in opposite directions to create a feathered effect.


Bake, rotating the pan from front to back halfway through cooking, until golden brown at the edges and set in the middle, 30 to 35 minutes. Transfer the pan to a rack and let cool completely.


Use the parchment paper to lift the cooled cookie slab out of the pan and onto a cutting board. Cut into 24 bars to serve.

Refrigerator Raspberry Jam


Combine the raspberries, sugar and salt in a medium saucepan and use a wooden spoon to crush the berries so they release their juices and start to moisten the sugar. Let stand for 10 minutes.


Place the pan over medium heat and bring to a simmer, stirring occasionally. Once it’s fully bubbling, continue cooking the fruit, stirring occasionally, until it reduces and, when you drag your spoon across the bottom of the pan, the jam leaves a trail for half a second before closing back up, 14 to 15 minutes.


Transfer the hot jam to an airtight container and let cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate for up to 1 month.

Cook's Note
When measuring flour or powdered sugar, spoon it into a dry measuring cup and level off the excess. Scooping compacts the ingredients, resulting in dry baked goods. And if using a stand mixer, use a rubber spatula to scrape the bottom of the bowl and the paddle after beating the butter and sugar together and after the dough is mixed to ensure the ingredients are evenly mixed throughout.