Mimi (my dad's mom) made these more often than any of her other sweets. It seemed like every time we went over to her house, she had some of these tucked away in the green tupperware container in her pantry. (Thankfully, I'm now the proud owner of that container--isn't it funny how such inconsequential items hold such memories and significance for us?)
Raspberries are my dad's favorite fruit...and they just so happen to be my favorite, also. I woke up this past Saturday with a hankerin' for baking something, and this recipe popped in my mind almost instantly. Just a little while later I was pulling them out of the oven.
The recipe is so quick and easy (only 6 ingredients) that I thought I'd share it.
Mimi's Raspberry Bars
~1 cup of butter (very soft; slightly melted is even okay)
~1 1/3 cups brown sugar, packed firmly
~2 cups flour
~1/2 teaspoon + a pinch of baking soda (a pinch would be a little less than 1/4 tsp.)
~2 cups old-fashioned oats (not the quick-cook kind)
~10 oz. jar of raspberry jam (or more like 14-16 oz. for me!)
Preheat oven to 400°. Grease 9" x 13" pan. (I always prefer to use a glass pan--if you have a vintage Pyrex pan like mine below, that's even better!)
Combine butter and sugar until well-blended.
Add dry ingredients. Mix well, but do not over mix (over-mixing will make the crumble hard). Mixture should be crumbly, but not dry.
Press half of this mixture into the bottom of your greased baking pan (press it firmly, but again, don't over-work it).
Spread with jam. There is nothing scientific about the amount of jam you use. If you prefer your bars to be scantly jammed (is that even a word?!?), use less jam. I prefer mine heavily jammed, so I use a bit more jam. Also, if you don't care for raspberries (horror of horrors!), you could really use any type of jam that you like.
Sprinkle remaining crumble mixture over the top of the jam (break apart any crumbles that are too large).
Bake at 400° for 20-25 minutes, until edges are golden brown. I bake mine for a maximum of 25 minutes.
Allow to cool completely (if you have that much self-control) before cutting into squares.