Whats in my cookie jar?

I have been thinking a lot lately about pregnancy. My little O is quickly approaching the one year mark, and I am pretty sure that this is when every mom sheds a few (or more) tears and thinks: "I need another baby, this little one is almost not so little anymore...". Attention family: no need to be alarmed, I have no news to share and am not having another baby anytime soon, I'm just saying.... I know a few lovely pregger ladies and I was thinking back to what I loved as a treat. It didn't take much because myself and my sister (who practically demanded them when she was pregnant) loved and sill love Ina Garten's peanut butter and jelly bars. How could I shake up this delicious stand by? I searched around the pantry to be inspired.... aha...Strawberry Nutella bars. For those of you who have never heard of Nutella, gasp, it is a delicious chocolate hazelnut spread. And if you like to eat Nutella straight from the jar, you know who you are, you will love this. It's brownie, meets cookie, meets hazelnut, meets strawberry, meets yum. And you will enjoy them pregnant or not  :) .

Strawberry Nutella Bars

  • 1/2 pound unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 2 extra-large, at room temperature
  • 1 3/4 cups Nutella, 1 1/2 cup for batter and 1/4 cup topper
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 1/4 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 cups (18 ounces) Strawberry jam or other jam (orange would be great) 
  • 1/3 cups hazelnuts, coarsely chopped
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9 by 13 by 2-inch cake pan. Line it with parchment paper, then grease and flour the pan. In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter and sugar on medium speed until light yellow, about 2 minutes. With the mixer on low speed, add the vanilla, eggs, and 1 1/2 cups Nutella and mix until all ingredients are combined. In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt. With the mixer on low speed, slowly add the flour mixture to the Nutella mixture. Mix just until combined.Spread 2/3 of the dough into the prepared cake pan and spread over the bottom with a knife or offset spatula. Spread the jam evenly over the dough.  Drop the remaining 1/4 cup Nutella over jam. Drop small globs of the remaining dough evenly over the jam. The jam will not be covered; it will spread in the oven. Sprinkle with chopped Hazelnuts and bake for 45 minutes, until golden brown. This is where you lick the Nutella spoon when nobody is looking. Cool and cut into squares. Proceed to be adored... 
{pre baked}
{post baked}

Ok...now go bake and stop drooling!


p.s. I would love to hear if you make these or have made anything else on the dish. Post back in the comments by clicking the comment counter in the upper right hand corner :)....can't wait to hear from you...


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