When I was thinking about making something with Nutella, I thought of some things I liked: Nutella, of course; raspberries certainly; hazelnuts, sure. So, with a nod to World Nutella Day, which was Sunday, I offer up Nutella Raspberry Meringue Bars. This is a somewhat shortcake-like base with a layer of Nutella, covered with a layer of raspberry jam, and topped with hazelnuts in meringue.
This recipe uses eggs that are separated with the whites then being beaten. Eggs separate easier if they are cold, so separate the eggs and let the yolks and whites come to warm temperature. This takes about 30 minutes. If you are in a hurry, the containers that the eggs are in can be set in some warm water.
Before I get to the recipe, I want to say a few words in praise of the off-set spatula. If you do not have one of these handy little gadgets, spend a few dollars and buy one. They will change your life in the kitchen. This one is about a 4-inch size which I find so handy I don’t know what I would do without it. It was a very important tool in make these cookies. An off-set spatula gives you control that you cannot get with a regular metal or rubber spatula.
Now, on to the cookie recipe.
Nutella Raspberry Meringue Bars
2 eggs, separated and brought to room temperature
1 1/2 c. all-purpose flour
3/4 c. firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 c. butter, softened
3/4 c. Nutella (or more if desired)
1 c. raspberry jam (or more if desired)
1/8 t. cream of tartar
2/3 c. sugar
2 T. all-purpose flour
1/2 t. vanilla
1/2 c. chopped hazelnuts, toasted
In a large bowl combine flour and brown sugar. With a pastry blender, cut in butter until mixture resembles fine crumbs. Add egg yolks and continue cutting in until mixture again resembles fine crumbs. Press mixture into the bottom of an ungreased 9x13-inch pan. Bake at 350 degrees 15 minutes until lightly browned. Remove from oven and let stand 10 minutes.
Turn measured-out Nutella into the center of the baked crust. As Nutella softens and melts spread with offset spatula from the center to the edges of the baked base. Let stand 10 minutes.
Measure jam into a glass measuring cup. Place in microwave and microwave 15-30 seconds to soften jam slightly. Stir. Turn out into the center of the Nutella topped base and spread with an off-set spatula from the center to the edges of the Nutella covered base.
While the base is cooling, beat egg whites and cream of tartar with an electric mixer until soft mounds form. Gradually add sugar, beating until stiff peaks form. Gently fold in flour, vanilla, and hazelnuts. Spread meringue on top of jam layer. Return to oven and bake 10-15 minutes more until meringue is light brown. Remove from oven and cool on wire rack. Cut into squares with a wet knife. These are very rich so you may want to cut them small. Makes about 36.
Linking to: What Make You Say Mmmmm Monday