116: Chocolate Oat Squares
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A week ago Wednesday I made Chocolate Oat Squares. I first had something like these at the farmer’s market in St. Louis. I remember that they were amazing. Hearty yet decadent. Mmm. I’ve made this dessert once before, from a recipe whose source I can’t remember, in a pan too small so that I had to cook it a bit longer to get them done.
You make an oatmeal cookie dough and pat 2/3 of it in the bottom of a 15×10 inch pan. Then you melt together a bag of chocolate chips with a can of sweetened condensed milk, a little butter, and a dash of salt, add some vanilla, and pour that over the oat layer. You top with the remaining oatmeal cookie dough. The recipe includes nuts, but I didn’t think we needed them, and we certainly didn’t miss them.
The only downside of this recipe is that the oatmeal dough is very sticky. It took a long time to pat it into the pan to get the entire bottom covered. I also took a while trying to spread the top oatmeal layer evenly. So, this recipe took a little extra time…
…but it was totally worth it. Like I said before, these squares were hearty yet decadent. They baked up so well. The chocolate layer is very fudgey – it’s actually a little like the chocolate layer on a good chocolate Pop-tart after you heat it up. The oat layers cut through the sweetness of the chocolate a little bit, so your stomach doesn’t get a shock from the richness. I took some to work, and they received very high praise. [Someone actually said she didn’t expect me to make something like that – something so rich, I think is what she meant. I suppose I end up having all the really sweet and rich things at home.]
I can’t recommend these enough. It’s worth getting your hands a little messy, and they’re really not difficult, aside from making layers. They also make a lot of squares, so you’ve got plenty for home and lots to share.