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Cranberry Pecan Crumble Bar Recipe
Christy, Sinkology’s food-loving recipe blogger, is here to share some recipes she has created for the Sinkology blog that reflect our view of a copper sink: simple, timeless, affordable, and beautifully rustic.
These cranberry pecan crumble bars would be a delightful addition to a Thanksgiving dessert compilation, a nice balance and cheery color to the usual traditional array of desserts. The crisp and buttery crust topped with sweet and tart cranberry filling and crunchy toasted pecans will tantalize your guests and your taste buds!
If you don’t know what else to do with the leftover cranberry sauce from Thanksgiving, these crumble bars would be a perfect way to use them as well.
I would like to wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving! Also, thank you to Sinkology and fellow followers for allowing me to be a part of your Thanksgiving celebration. Enjoy the day with good eats, family, and friends.
Let’s make these tasty crumble bars. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a 13×9-baking pan with parchment paper, leaving extra for the overhang for easy removal. Set aside.
In a medium bowl, whisk together 2½ cups all-purpose flour, ½ cup sugar, ½ tsp. baking powder and ½ tsp. salt. Cut the butter sticks into small pieces and add to the flour mixture.
With a pastry cutter, cut in the butter evenly into the flour until it resembles course meal. Add the beaten egg and stir. Then using your fingers, massage the dough briefly to incorporate everything.
Reserve one cup of the dough for the crumble topping and set aside. Transfer the dough to the prepared pan and press evenly and firmly into the bottom. Bake for 17-18 minutes until the crust is lightly golden. Let cool while you make the cranberry filling.
In a medium saucepan, combine 2 ½ cups fresh cranberries, grated apple (I used Pink Lady), 2/3 cup sugar, ¼ cup brown sugar, 2 tbsp. brandy (if using, I didn’t have any so used 1 tbsp. rum instead), and a pinch of salt.
Bring to a boil over medium-high heat until the cranberries begin to split open, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. I really liked the addition of the grated apple to this filling as it helps temper the tartness of the cranberries. You could easily substitute a grated pear in place of apple. By grating the apple, it almost cooks away so you don’t really see or notice any apple bits in the filling.
In a small bowl, whisk together 1½ tbsp. cornstarch with equal amounts of water. Stir into the cranberry mixture and cook until thickened, couple minutes.
I actually prepared the cranberry filling the night before and refrigerated it until I was ready to use it. I let it sit out at room temperature while I made the crust so it would be more spreadable. Gorgeous deep red color!
Spread the cranberry filling evenly over the crust. If you have your cranberry filling already prepared ahead of time like I did, it is not necessary to cool the crust before spreading it.
Use your fingers to press together the reserved crumble topping into small lumps and sprinkle evenly all over the cranberry filling. Then sprinkle the pecans evenly all over. I purposely sprinkled the pecans over the cranberry filling parts that were visible and not covered by the crumb topping.
Bake for 20-25 minutes until the topping is golden. Let cool inside the baking pan. Then chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes or place in freezer for 15 minutes before cutting. This helps achieve cleaner cuts if it’s chilled. Carefully lift parchment to remove the bars and place on a cutting board. Cut into squares with a sharp knife. These can be stored at room temperature in airtight container for up to 3 days but I prefer to store mine in the refrigerator, as I like them cold.
- 1 cup unsalted butter (2 sticks)
- 2½ cups all-purpose flour
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- ½ tsp. baking powder
- ½ tsp. salt
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- ½ cup pecans
- 2 ½ cups fresh cranberries
- 1 medium apple, peeled and grated
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 2 tbsp. brandy, optional
- Pinch of salt
- 1½ tbsp. cornstarch
- 1½ tbsp. water
- Preheat the oven 350. Line a 13x9-baking pan with parchment paper leaving extra for overhang.
- In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt until incorporated. Dice the butter into small pieces and then add to the flour mixture. With a pastry cutter, cut in the butter evenly into the flour until it resembles coarse meal. (See note for food processor method.)
- Stir in the beaten egg until combined and then use your fingers to massage the dough briefly to ensure egg is incorporated. Reserve one cup of the dough for crumb topping, set aside.
- Add the dough to the prepared baking pan and press evenly into the bottom. Bake for 18 minutes or until the crust is lightly golden.
- For cranberry filling, add the fresh cranberries, grated apple, both sugars, brandy, and salt in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil on medium-high heat until the cranberries begin to split open, stirring constantly. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. In a small bowl, whisk together the cornstarch and water. Stir into the cranberry mixture and cook until thickened, about 2 minutes.
- Spread the cranberry filling evenly over the crust.
- Use your fingers to press together the reserved topping into small lumps and sprinkle evenly all over the cranberry filling. Then sprinkle the pecans evenly all over.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until topping is golden. Cool completely on a wire rack then carefully lift the parchment to remove the bars from pan. Place on cutting board and cut into 24 squares.
- These will keep in an airtight container for up to 3 days at room temperature.
- Food processor method - add the diced butter with the flour mixture and pulse until size of small peas, a few one-second pulses. Then add the egg and continue to pulse just until the dough begins to gather into large clumps.