Congo Bars

It's hard to be a guest at a party, much less the guest of honor... at least for me it is! Although I knew I wasn't required to bring anything to the baby shower my friends put together for me, I didn't have the heart to attend empty-handed. I was already in a baking mood so I whipped these Congo Bars to take to my first baby shower.

I've had my eye on this recipe for awhile so that I had an excuse to use up some leftover coconut and white chocolate chips I had in my cupboard. If I were to describe these bars, it would be what you'd get if you crossed a blondie and a seven-layer bar. The texture is just like a blondie with the flavors of a seven layer bar. The combination of white chocolate chips, semi-sweet chocolate chips (I used bittersweet chocolate chips), toasted walnuts and toasted coconuts was delicious. I'm almost regretting not taking some home after the baby shower because I'm craving them now - lol.

Congo Bars
recipe adapted from Cook's Illustrated

1 cup walnuts, toasted & chopped coarse
1 1/2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut
1 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoons table salt
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter, melted & cooled
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
2 eggs
4 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 oz bittersweet or semi sweet chocolate chips
3 oz white chocolate chips

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and adjust oven rack to the middle position

In a dry saute pan over medium heat, toast the walnuts (about 7-10 minutes) until fragrant then place in a bowl to cool. If you're using whole walnuts, be sure to chop coarsely.

In the same dry saute pan over medium heat, toast the coconut until lightly browned (about 7-10 minutes) and add to the bowl of nuts to cool.

While nuts and coconut cool, line a 9 x 13 baking pan with foil with enough to hang over the edges to lift the congo bars out of the pan later. Spray foil-lined pan with nonstick cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, and salt together; set aside.

In the mixing bowl of a stand mixer, whisk melted butter and brown sugar together until combined. Add the eggs and vanilla and mix well.

Using rubber spatula, fold the dry ingredients into egg mixture until just combined; do not overmix.

Fold in the chocolate chips, coconut, and nuts and turn batter into prepared pan, smoothing top with rubber spatula.

Bake in the preheated oven until top is shiny, cracked, and light golden brown, 22 to 25 minutes; do not overbake. Cool on wire rack to room temperature. Remove bars from pan by lifting foil overhang and transfer to cutting board. Cut into 2-inch squares and serve.




    Congrats! I guess next time we hook up no beer for you!

    But yea you can bring those bars... ;-)

  2. yum, those look great! I love 7 layer bars and blondies, so I bet I would love these bars.

    I think it is so cute that you brought a treat to your own baby shower!!

  3. wow looking good but i don't have test but I will try your great dishes good work keep it up

  4. I like the bars! I just made some this morning and I am so happy with the result. Tastes really good.

  5. Nice food and the dish is looking good thank you for shearing good work keep it up

  6. My step-mom used to make these (or a variation of them) all the time! With 6 kids, they actually lasted a whole day, sometimes two! This brought back a flood of memories and they look yummy!!!

  7. I seldom leave comments on blogs, but you really impress me, also I have a few questions like to ask, what's your contact details?


  8. I've had this bookmarked for at least 4 months now, and finally got around to making them. I'm think I'm hooked! I accidentally bought sweetened coconut, so I cut out a little of the brown sugar and it seems to have turned out alright. Hopefully my family likes them as much as I do!