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Traveling and a serious case of the stomach bug that made its way through our family has delayed this post by a few days, but it’s still a quick and ridiculously delicious recipe to whip up on lazy weekend mornings or other special occasions.  I like to bake for every reason I can find and sometimes for no reason at all, all throughout the year, but even most around the holidays.  This year, the night before Christmas, when everyone went to bed, I stayed up way too late and made a batch of snickerdoodle cookies for Santa, THIS cookie butter cheesecake for Christmas day, and a pan of blueberry crumb bars for Christmas morning.  It had all night to set, which is best for these bars, that if eaten too soon after baking, will be more of a blueberry crumble.  Still just as tasty, but too crumbly to hold the consistency of the bars.  This is a fool-proof, no-mixer-required recipe that is easy to make and perfect for baking ahead of time if you are heading to someone’s home for brunch or spending the holidays with family.  Christmas day can be hectic enough, so it was great that this left us more time to relax and watch the kids open their gifts without having to cook up something for breakfast.  And although it is not overly sweet, it doubles as a favorite dessert.

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Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup or 1 stick unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup old-fashioned whole-rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 light brown sugar
  • a pinch of salt
  • 12 ounces or 2 cups frozen blueberries (I didn’t thaw them)
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice (or the juice squeezed from one large lemon)
  • 2 teaspoons cornstarch

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Instructions:

  1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Line a square pan (an 8-inch or 9-inch pan will do just fine) with aluminum foil and grease with unsalted butter.
  2.  In a large bowl, melt the butter about 1 minute.  Add the flour, oats, sugars and pinch of salt.  Stir to combine.  Set one generous cup of the mixture aside to be used for the crumb topping.
  3.  Transfer the remaining mixture to the prepared pan and pack it down to create an even, flat crust.
  4.  In the same large bowl that you used for the crust and crumble mixture, add the frozen blueberries, 1/3 cup sugar, 2 tablespoons lemon juice and 2 teaspoons cornstarch, and toss to combine.  Evenly distribute this blueberry mixture over the crust.
  5.  Sprinkle the reserved one generous cup of the crumb mixture over the blueberries, making sure to keep some of the pieces bigger.
  6.  Bake for 55-60 minutes, or until the edges are just set and the top is pale golden in color.  Allow the bars to cool for at least 1 hour before serving, or overnight to hold their shape the best.

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Enjoy!

xo gina