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10 March 2013

Oatmeal Fudge Bars



I am a homebody, really to a fault. I need to learn to venture out more--and not just in the travel sort of way. See traveling is different, the purpose is to really venture out and see and experience new things. My flaw, is when it comes to doing this only a regular basis in the town where I live. After getting married- it seems like I am even more content spending time at home with my two boys. Which is wonderful- but I think its fun and healthy, to do things not at home and sometimes not together :)  I know, some people love doing everything as a couple and to you guys I say "to each his own." I like a little independence.

Yesterday was one of those nights. I've mentioned the wonderful people I hang out with at the dog park. And last night one of them, who is a band, played at the Bryan Lakeside Icehouse. I had never been and was in a mood to actually go out. What was the selling point for me? They were going to be selling crawfish! I love crawfish! And I got to spend some time with some fun people :) Well, the hubby was invited to come- but in our style- he opted to spend some "me" time at home watching movies and I opted to go out with Justin, Luke and another student in our program, Vince to see the band play and enjoy some seafood. 


When there- Vince had never tried crawfish so we split 4lbs of it :)! And why yes, we did finish it all! Did a little chatting and a little bit of dancing. One of my friends from the  dog park tried to teach me the slow dance two step. I was horrible! And may have stepped on his foot on more than one occasion  On a side note: coming from Houston and eating crawfish in Bryan/College Station (BCS)- there is no comparison. First of all BCS crawfish is not spiced right AND it is way too overpriced during crawfish season. Big disappointment for sure! Then, Vince was craving dessert, so we headed to Justin and Luke's place to enjoy ice cream and fresh baked cookies while playing a game of Cranium (my favorite game). ::cough::cough::Luke and I won::cough::cough:: ;) It was a blast! Proving to me I should go out more (and in just a few minutes I am- to Houston to see my cousins!)

In the meantime, enjoy this wonderfully, ooey-gooey (you know my favorite)- oatmeal fudge bars. The fudge layer is aaa-MA-zing--melting in your mouth :) And its extra gooey because I took these pictures when it came out of the oven! It's a bit funny because I think this is a recipe that my aunt used to make when I was younger. I loved it so much that I made it like every week in 8th grade. And it did not ring a bell with me- until after I made these bars and took a bite- flash to the past :)






OATMEAL FUDGE BARS
Adapted from Megan and Claudy

INGREDIENTS

Preheat Oven to 325F

FOR THE OATMEAL LAYER
2 stick of butter, softened
2 c. of brown sugar
2 eggs, room temperature
2 tsp. vanilla 
1/3 c. milk
2 1/2 c. flour
2 tsp. baking soda
3 c. rolled oats

FOR THE FUDGE LAYER
1 (14 oz.) can of condensed milk
6 tbsp. of butter
1 tsp. vanilla
2 c. chocolate chips

DIRECTIONS

For the Oatmeal Layer:
In the bowl of a standmixer, fitted with paddle attachment, cream together butter and sugar until fluffy, about 6 minutes on medium-high speed. Then add in eggs, one a time and mix, on medium-slow speed, until incorporated. Slowly stir in vanilla and milk. 

In a separate bowl- whisk together flour, baking soda and rolled oats. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients, combining until just incorporated.

For the Fudge Layer:
In a saucepan over medium heat, melt together condensed milk and butter, constantly stirring. Once butter is melted, add in vanilla and stir. Add in chocolate chips, one cup at a time. Mix with spatula until all the chips have melted. Then add in next cup and continue stirring until all chips have melted. Remove from heat.

To Assemble:
Grease a 9x13 baking dish with butter or shortening (if you do not do this- your bars will stick to your baking dish). Pour half of the oatmeal batter into the baking dish. Evenly spread batter in baking dish using a spatula. Pour the fudge over the oatmeal layer. Again using a spatula to evenly distribute fudge. Finally, top fudge with remaining oatmeal batter. This is a bit tricky as the fudge is soft. This is what I did- place spoonfuls of oatmeal batter on top of fudge- evenly placing spoonfuls across fudge layer. Then gently using a spatula- smear together the oatmeal batter spoonfuls (if that makes sense :) It may not completely cover fudge- this is okay! The batter will spread when baking!

Baking this is also tricky. The original recipe stated 350F degrees for 25 minutes. My bars were nowhere near done. I recommend cooking them at a lower temperature for longer- to keep the inside cooking but the outside from burning. Bake at 325F degree for 45-60 minutes--but keep an eye on it and check it every 10 minutes after the first 30 minutes have passed. 

Enjoy,
Chika


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