I recently inherited a number of my grandmother's recipes, and I love looking through them and making some of them. Though many weren't the recipes that I grew up eating, there are some that have very distinct memories—her beef chili with cornbread, always eaten on a specific set of red and white dishes, sugar-coated rosette cookies at Christmas, and gravy-coated Swedish meatballs, to name a few (and given my family has been in Minnesota for a few generations, no recipe collection would be complete without several variations on hot dish.)
My favorites, however, are the desserts: Midwestern women are masters of sweets, and when I was growing up, no family gathering was complete without an array of bars, cookies and cakes.
Blondies were a particular favorite in my house when I was a kid, and my mom made them often (my dad is allergic to chocolate, so she was always looking for good non-chocolate sweets). For this recipe, I added white chocolate and butterscotch chips, which add a bit of sweetness and a nice flavor contrast (I actually cut way back on the sugar in the original recipe.) These came together in minutes, and reminded me what an easy dessert they are. Next time, I might brown the butter to give them a more caramelized flavor, and maybe even mix in a savory element like chopped rosemary.
White Chocolate & Butterscotch Blondies
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, room temperature
1 cup brown sugar
1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 cup white chocolate chips
1/2 cup butterscotch chips
Preheat oven to 350°. Lightly grease a 9-inch cast iron skillet, or 8x8-inch square baking dish.
In the bowl of an electric mixer, mix together butter and sugar until light and fluffy, 2 to 3 minutes. Add eggs and mix until combined. Add flour, vanilla, salt and baking powder and mix to combine. Stir in white chocolate and butterscotch chips.
Spread batter in prepared pan, and bake until golden brown and a tester inserted in the middle comes out clean, 20 to 25 minutes. Let cool slightly, then cut into squares and serve.