I’ve written a blog post on each of Ben and my wedding anniversaries, a tradition I’ve kept because it gives me pause to a) reflect on my marriage and b) make a strawberry dessert recipe to share with you. Our wedding cake was strawberry, so each year on our anniversary, I bake a strawberry dessert and post the recipe here, along with a few of my marital musings.
First thing’s first: these Strawberry Oatmeal Bars. Oh my. Every year, I say I’ve baked my favorite strawberry wedding dessert to date, but these Strawberry Oatmeal Bars might be the best yet, and they even qualify as healthy oatmeal bars too!
A bewitching cross between a soft bar cookie and a streusel-topped crumb bar, these sweet treats are the perfect use for the fresh strawberries that are finally starting to make their way into grocery stores in big, juicy quantities. They are also one of the easiest desserts I’ve ever baked.
The top and bottom “crust” of the oatmeal bars comes together in a single bowl, and since the recipe calls for melted, not softened, butter, you don’t even need to wait for the butter to come to room temperature first.
Ingredients: FOR THE STRAWBERRY BARS:
1 cup old fashioned rolled oats (gluten free if needed)
3/4 cup white whole wheat flour (or substitute all purpose flour or 1:1 baking flour to make gluten free)
1/3 cup light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted (or substitute melted coconut oil to make vegan/dairy-free)
1 teaspoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice (from about 1/2 small lemon)
1 tablespoon granulated sugar, divided
2 cups, small-diced strawberries (10 ounces)
FOR THE VANILLA GLAZE (OPTIONAL BUT DELICIOUS, ESPECIALLY IF YOU PREFER A SWEETER BAR):
1/2 cup powdered sugar, sifted
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 tablespoon milk (any kind you like)
Place a rack in the center of your oven and heat to 375 degrees F. Line an 8-by-8-inch baking pan with parchment paper so that the paper overhangs two sides like “handles.”
In a medium bowl, combine the oats, 3/4 cup flour, brown sugar, ginger, and salt. Pour in the melted butter and stir until it forms clumps and the dry ingredients are evenly moistened. Set aside 1/2 cup of the crumble mixture, then press the rest into an even layer in the bottom of the prepared pan.
Scatter half of the strawberries over the crust. Sprinkle the cornstarch evenly over the top, then sprinkle on the lemon juice, and 1/2 tablespoon of the granulated sugar. Scatter on the remaining berries, then the remaining 1/2 tablespoon sugar. Sprinkle the reserved crumbs evenly over the top. You will have some fruit showing through.
You can find complete recipes of this Strawberry Oatmeal Bars in wellplated.com