No idea why, but the first hit song I remember as a kid was “I Found My Thrill on Blueberry Hill”. Maybe it’s because I was born right before the Happy Days phenomenon and heard Richie Cunningham sing the lyrics adnauseam each time he got a date. Or maybe it just played in my house on that archaic electronic known as a record player.
Well, I have found my new thrill and, unlike Richie, it has nothing to do with an upcoming date. If I told you about my last 1st date, you’d understand my current lack of enthusiasm for dating. No, I’d pick these blueberry bars any day over “Personal Injury Attorney with Porsche”. My girlfriend Laura loves the blueberry bars at Starbucks, so I recently set out on a mission to find a better blueberry bar that didn’t break the bank. These blueberry oatmeal bars are amazing and without question are better than Starbucks! The crust and topping are to die for and the fresh blueberry filling was fabulous.
Blueberry Bars… not to worry, you have definitely earned a second date in my kitchen. And if you’re reading this “Personal Injury Attorney with Porsche”, I’m sorry we didn’t have a second date, but I’ll be happy to make you a batch of these blueberry bars!
Berry Oatmeal Crumble Bars – Baking Bites
Crumble and Crust
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 1/2 cups rolled oats (quick-cooking or regular)
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup butter, softened and cut into 7-9 large chunks
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
Filling: In a medium saucepan, stir together berries and lemon juice and cook medium heat until fruit is tender, about 8-15 minutes, depending on type of berries being used (strawberries take longer than other berries, usually).
In a small bowl, whisk together sugar and cornstarch, then stir into fruit mixture. Continue cooking until mixture comes to a boil. Boil for 1-2 minutes, until thick. Scrape berry filling into a medium bowl and set aside.
Crust: Preheat oven to 350 and lightly grease a 9×13? baking pan.
In a food processor (or large mixing bowl), combine flour, oats, brown sugar, butter, baking soda , salt and vanilla extract. Pulse until mixture is thoroughly blended and resembles coarse crumbs. Set aside 1 1/2 cups of this mixture in a medium bowl. Pour remaining crumb mixture into the bottom of the prepared baking dish, spread evenly and pat down. Place filling in dollops over crust and carefully spread to cover entire surface. Squeeze reserved crumb mixture into large clumps with your fingers and sprinkle evenly over the top of the fruit filling.
Bake until golden brown, about 30 to 35 minutes. Cool completely on a wire rack before slicing.
Cut into 20 bars to serve.