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Butterscotch and Walnut Blondies

Butterscotch Walnut Blondies
Butterscotch may conjure up images of hard, toffee-like candies, but the building blocks of butterscotch are just brown sugar, butter and vanilla and it is easy to infuse a butterscotch flavor into many different recipes by using these elements. These Butterscotch and Walnut Blondies are a perfect example. The blondies use a generous amount of brown sugar that melds well with the flavor of the butter in the blondie batter and delivers a rich and not-too-sweet butterscotch flavor to these satisfyingly chewy bar cookies.

The blondies are easy to make and only require a few ingredients, all of which you probably have in your pantry if you bake on a regular basis. The most important element of these brownies is the brown sugar, which is what really gives them their butterscotch flavor. Light brown or golden brown sugar is the best choice for this recipe, as dark brown sugar will give the brownies a stronger molasses note that will dominate the butterscotch. Like my basic brownie recipe, these don’t use any leavening. This ensures that they keep a chewy texture, a very tight crumb and don’t become cakey or dry when they’re in the oven.

My favorite part of these blondies is the contrast between the chewiness of the blondies themselves and the crispness of the walnuts. I use untoasted walnuts, which still have a nice crunch but seem to have a more pronounced buttery flavor to them than toasted walnuts. You could use other nuts in these, though the walnuts work so well that they’re bound to win you over even if you’re not a big walnut fan.

Butterscotch and Walnut Blondies
1/2 cup butter
1 cup + 1 tbsp light brown sugar
1/3 tsp salt
1 large egg
1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 350F. Line an 8×8-inch baking pan with aluminum foil.
In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugar until light. Beat in salt, egg and vanilla extract until well combined. Add in flour and stir just until no streaks of dry ingredients remain. Stir in walnuts. Pour batter – it will be very thick – into prepared baking dish and press it into an even layer with a spatula.
Bake for about 30 minutes, until bars are set and the edges are lightly browned. Cool in the pan before slicing.

Makes 16.

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  • I LOVE blondies… and butterscotch… win win!

  • Fallon
    June 29, 2011

    These look great!! I love how dense and thick they are. Walnuts must taste delicious in these blondies.

  • Jenny
    June 29, 2011

    I never knew that dark brown sugar would produce too much of a molasses flavor. I’ve had that comment before on my blondies. I will have to try and use lighter brown sugar for a more butterscotch taste next time!

  • Maureen
    June 30, 2011

    A cup of tea and 30 or 40 of these blondies and I’d be a happy woman. Yummy bars.

  • Liddy
    July 2, 2011

    I don’t see where to add the walnuts in. Do you just stir them in after you stir in the flour?

  • Lynda Sisson
    July 2, 2011

    Made this and took it to a party. I was lucky to be able to get a piece for myself it went so fast. Great recipe.

  • Julia
    July 17, 2011

    I made these for a family reunion this weekend and they got rave reviews! Thanks for a wonderful recipe (and for the lesson on dark vs. light brown sugar).

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