A couple of weeks ago we were pulling weeds in our front yard (which, I’ll be honest, is mostly weeds), and a couple of people walked by and commented to Steven that if we didn’t take out the blackberry bramble growing in the middle of the hillside, it would take over. I know that it is pretty much a giant weed, so every time it tries to expand, I mercilessly cut it back. But I carefully avoid the flowers, because those lead to delicious desserts like this one. Right now I’ve got a ton of blackberries, and I’ve been trying to figure out what to do with them all. In the past I’ve made crumbles and crisps and pies, but this time I decided to try these blackberry ginger bars, for something a little different. If they tasted these bars, those bramble-haters would know I made the right decision.
Blackberry Ginger Bars
(Adapted from here.)
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup oat flour or finely ground old-fashioned rolled oats
1/3 cups brown sugar
1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 cups (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
4 cups blackberries
1/4 cups granulated sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cups toasted, skinned hazelnuts
1/4 cups brown sugar
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
Preheat oven to 300°F.
Butter or grease a 9-inch square pan.
Stir together all-purpose flour, oat flour or ground oats, brown sugar and salt in a large bowl using a fork to combine and remove any lumps. Add melted butter and vanilla and stir until thoroughly combined.
Press dough evenly into prepared pan and freeze 30 minutes. Bake frozen crust at 300°F 40 to 45 minutes or until golden brown and firm to the touch. Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly.
While dough is chilling, combine blackberries, sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, fresh ginger, and salt in a 2-quart non-reactive saucepan over medium heat. Stir until mixture comes to a boil and continue to simmer stirring constantly until fruit thickens slightly. Remove from heat.
Place rolled oats, all purpose flour, hazelnuts, brown sugar, granulated sugar, salt, ginger, and cinnamon in the bowl of a food processor and process until nuts are coarsely chopped. Pour mixture in bowl and drizzle with melted butter, using your hands to combine and make small clumps.
Increase oven temperature to 350°F.
Spread 1-1/2 cups blackberry filling over crust and sprinkle evenly with crumble topping creating larger clumps if desired.
Bake about 50 minutes or until golden brown, rotating the pan halfway through the baking time. Remove from oven and cool on a rack 10 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pan to prevent the bars from sticking. Cool completely and cut into bars.
P.S. I’ll be posting another blackberry recipe later this week!