Friday, February 24, 2012

Abracadabra Bars

I love magic bars.  You know the ones?  Graham cracker crust and topped with a sinful mixture of nuts, various chips, and coconut and then covered with sweetened condensed milk?  I never make them because I can't be trusted not to scarf up an entire pan in the blink of an eye.

For whatever reason, magic bars were on my mind the other day.  So I set out to improve on what was already pretty perfect.  I'm calling my bars Abracadabra Bars since they taste like they were sprinkled with magic and disappeared faster than a magician can wave his wand.

Change number one - bacon.  Of course.  My daughter asked me the other day why I add bacon to everything.  I thought it was a silly question, especially coming from a person whose hand is constantly being smacked away as she sneaks bites of the bacon that I am putting in everything.  Can't blame her though.  Bacon is at its tastiest when eaten in little bites from a pile of paper towels, still warm from the pan.

Change number two - oats.  I added some instant oats to the crust in addition to the traditional graham cracker crumbs.  This little change added more texture to a bar that is all about texture.  With bacon and oats, these bars are practically breakfast food.

Lastly, I tweaked the quantities on the chocolate and butterscotch chips as well as the coconut. I normally don't have any use for butterscotch chips but their caramel flavor works well here.  Especially in smaller quantities since they can be overally sweet.  More chocolate.  No explanation needed.  Less coconut.  I don't have any rationale for this decision since I adore coconut, just seemed right.

An undesired side effect of writing this post has been two of the most annoying songs of all time, "Do You Believe In Magic" and "Abracadabra" running through my head.  Ugh.

Let me tell you, these were fantastic.  Fantastic.  With their craggy surface is a vertable flavor landscape.  I love the contrast of textures.  The sticky crackle of the bacon, the smoothness of the chips, the chewy coconut, the crunch of the pecans meld together into the perfect combination.  The bacon added the smoky flavor as only bacon can but didn't overpower the other flavors.  One of my best efforts recently!

Linking To:  Six Sisters Strut Your Stuff Saturday Link Party

Abracadabra Bars

6 strips bacon
1 cup graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup instant oats
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
1 cup chopped pecans
1/2 cup butterscotch chips
1 cup chocolate chips
1/2 cup grated or shredded coconut
1 can sweetened condensed milk

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. 

Line 9 x 13 inch pan with sheet of parchment paper so that paper hangs over sides creating a sling.

Chop bacon into small pieces and cook until crisp.  Drain and set aside.

Mix graham cracker crumbs, oats, and butter in bowl until combined.  Press into bottom of pan.  Spread pecans evenly over crust then follow with butterscotch chips, chocolate chips, bacon, and coconut.  Pour sweetened condensed milk over.

Place pan in oven and bake for about 20 - 25 minutes, until top is slightly brown.  Cool in pan for at least 30 minutes, longer if possible to allow bars to set.  Remove bars using parchment paper sling and cut.
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  1. I thought of the Adam Ant song when I saw your post! I kind of like the song (hands head in shame) along with his other hit "Goody Goody Two Shoes."

    I never heard of these bars--one of the cool things about reading food blogs is that I've learned about all of these treats (like cowboy cookies, Namino bars, magic bars, even red velvet cake) that I never ate growing up.

  2. the addition of oats in genius! love magic bars, but my least favorite part is always the crust, which tends to crumble when i eat it. i'll be sure to try it your way soon!

  3. WOW. The bacon just sent me over the top. I have to make these!

  4. Nice! This look totally sinful. I may just add crushed pretzels to mine too~~

  5. Ooooooh!!! I love magic bars and haven't made them in ages - all of your changes really do sound like you've made something perfect even better. I'm so happy to have discovered your beautiful blog!

  6. I've never had a magic bar and yours sound very good, with the oats, plenty of chocolate, just a small amount of butterscotch chips. Not to be a spoil sport but I don't really see the point of trying to eat bacon more often and I would make these without it.

  7. yum! I've always loved these bars but rarely make them.I can't help it, I want to eat the entire batch! Love the bacon, gives me an excuse to make these again!

  8. These do look fantastic! I really like the idea of adding bits of bacon and oats in the mix and I really like the name you gave your bars.

  9. Candy, these blissful bars look amazing... Love all the ingredients you used, and really digging the sweet/savory combinations. Lovely recipe!

  10. I don't make magic cookie bars for the same reason! And I love your twists on this classic....mmmmmm.

  11. These are great and delicious!! We loved having you link up to "Strut Your Stuff Saturday." We hope to have you back again soon!! -The Sisters

  12. OMG! I love a Seven Layer bar as we call them but you have taken it to a whole new level! I'm also bad about trying to eat the whole pan full but now that we can qualify these as a breakfast item, it's all good! Pinned.


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