Raspberry, Whiskey, and Caramelized Oat Blondies
Cranachan is one of my favorite desserts but few people in the States know of it. Cranachan (there is only one right way to say it but I run through no less than 7 incorrect pronunciations in my head à la Will Ferrell and "Francisco" in Elf) is a traditional Scottish dessert made with cream, fresh raspberries, oats, and whiskey. Similar to other English, Welsh, and Irish desserts, it's simple to throw together and relies more on pairing fantastic flavors rather than a stuffy presentation. That said, sometimes Cranachan and Eton Messes and the like aren't the best travel companions. I translated Cranachan to become more portable (because I eat on the go, standing still, sitting, walking, probably while sleeping, definitely during 97% of meetings), with a wider breadth of texture (because CAKE and BROWNIES), and with a few extra nuanced flavors (caramelization, warm almonds, toasted meringue). Slàinte Mhath.
In a large bowl
8 tablespoons (113g) butter, melted and cooled
1 1/2 cups (320g) dark brown sugar
2 large eggs
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons whiskey
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon baking powder
In a small bowl
1 cup (120g) all purpose flour
1/4 cup (30g) bread flour
On the sidelines
1 cup (173g) fresh raspberries + extra for decorating if you like
About a half portion or so of Swiss Meringue
About a half portion of so of Caramelized Oats
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and lightly spray an 8x8 pan with nonstick spray.
In the large bowl, whisk together all the ingredients.
Add the bowl of flours to the large bowl and stir just until combined. Don't stir too vigorously because we don't want to incorporate air into the batter.
Stir in the fresh raspberries and be careful not to crush them too much. A few here or there is totally fine and to be expected.
Spread the batter evenly in the prepared pan.
Bake in the preheated oven for about 45 minutes or until the center is just set. Remove and let cool completely. If only adults are partaking and you're feeling cheeky, I like to brush a bit of whiskey on top of the hot blondies when they come out of the oven. The whiskey soaks in while they're still warm and creates a much deeper flavor.
Once the blondies are cool, preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit and top the blondies with Swiss meringue. Toast the meringue in the oven for about 8-10 minutes or until as toasty as you like. Remove and let cool for about 20 minutes before topping with the caramelized oats and a few fresh raspberries.