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3.21.2012

The best part of the job

I am supposed to be writing a manuscript, not baking rye crumble bars. No more rye crumble bars no more rye crumble bars no more rye crumble bars no more rye crumble bars no more rye crumble bars.




When I found out that I was pregnant, I asked my publisher to extend my deadline, which was supposed to be March 1. I wasn’t sure how ill I would feel, but I’d heard plenty of pregnant lady horror stories, and I thought it was best to plan for the worst. Happily, I wasn’t very ill, but I was very unproductive. I was very, very tired. One morning, when the alarm was going off and I showed no signs of movement, Brandon checked to make sure I was still breathing.

I am pleased to report that I am no longer that tired. I am less pleased to report that I will be living at my desk for several weeks to come. But I’m also sort of excited about it. After a year of feeling like I was mostly writing around the story, alternating between panic and elation and panic and elation and desperately needing a beer, I feel like I’m finally inside of it. I can see the story differently in here, and I’m finding a lot that I didn’t know about: details, ideas, explanations, a number of stupid jokes (which will hopefully improve before publication). This, to me, is the best part of the job: the way that the act of writing often shows me, for the first time, what was there all along. I could say a lot more about that, but all I really should say is THANK YOU, UNIVERSE, FOR SAVING ME, and then get back to work.




You, however, can bake some rye crumble bars. The recipe for these comes from Kim Boyce’s terrific Good to the Grain, and I stumbled upon it last week, at the end of a good day, while looking for a way to use up some rye flour I had bought. I’d bought the flour for a different recipe, a recipe that I wound up not liking, and I don’t know how things go in your house, but in mine, rye flour will not disappear of its own accord. So I got out Kim Boyce’s book, because it’s yet to fail me, and boom, the streak continues.

This recipe might look a little daunting, time-wise, because it consists of three parts: the shortbread crust, the crumble topping, and, in between, the jam. I didn’t have a lot of time to spend in the kitchen, so I took Boyce’s advice and made mine over the course of a couple of days, as the moments presented themselves, and stashed the components in the fridge until I was ready to assemble the whole thing. Basically, you make a quick shortbread dough from a mixture of rye flour and all-purpose, and then you press that evenly into a pan. (I did a notably crappy job of this, because I was rushing to make a phone date with my mother, and my pressed-out dough wound up looking less like a pastry crust and more like a gently rolling sand dune. But it came out fine.) You bake the crust until it’s firm, and then you spread jam - you slather jam, actually; you’re using quite a lot - over the crust. Then you top the jam with a crumble made from oats, both flours, two types of sugar, and melted butter, and you slide the pan back into the oven.

Judging by the ingredients, I knew that the bars would be tasty, but the result was even better than I could have expected. I tend to think of rye in the context of rye bread with caraway seeds, which have a strong, sour flavor; I forget how subtle and sweet the flour itself is. It’s nutty, almost malty. I like rye bread, but rye crumble bars have nothing to do with it. Anything with a shortbread base and a crumble topping is bound to taste good, unless you fill the space in between with wood putty, but it’s the sweet, toasty rye flour that makes this recipe, and the way the sweet, toasty rye flour tastes with butter. I filled my crumble bars with a homemade mirabelle plum jam that a friend sent us last spring, and while I doubt it gets any better than that, I’m also eager to try a batch with apricot jam, or maybe strawberry. But there’s work to do first.


Rye Crumble Bars with Jam
Adapted slightly from Good to the Grain, by Kim Boyce

For this recipe, I used Bob’s Red Mill dark rye flour. You can also buy light rye flour, in which some parts of the grain have been removed before milling, but Boyce suggests the dark type, which has a deeper, nuttier flavor, and I second her recommendation.

As for jam, choose any one you like, but make sure that it has a good level of brightness and acidity. That’ll help it hold up to the richness of the buttery crust. Also, if you come up a little short, don’t worry. I only had 1 ¼ cups, not 1 ½ cups, and it was no problem.

Shortbread crust:
65 grams (½ cup) dark rye flour
120 grams (1 cup) all-purpose flour
50 grams (1/3 cup) dark brown sugar
½ tsp. kosher salt
113 grams (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Crumble:
100 grams (1 cup) rolled oats
32 grams (3 Tbsp.) dark brown sugar
52 grams (¼ cup plus 2 Tbsp.) dark rye flour
30 grams (¼ cup) all-purpose flour
38 grams (3 Tbsp.) sugar
1 tsp. kosher salt
85 grams (6 Tbsp.) unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly

To assemble:
350 ml (1 ½ cups) jam, preserves, or fruit butter

Set a rack in the middle of the oven, and preheat to 275°F. Rub a 9-inch springform pan with butter, or grease with cooking spray.

To make the shortbread crust, combine the flours, sugar, and salt in a large bowl, and whisk to mix well. Add the melted butter and vanilla extract, and stir until thoroughly combined. (I found the mixture a little dry at first, so I put my hand in and squeezed and massaged a bit to bring the dough together.) Using your hands, press the dough evenly into the bottom of the prepared pan. Put the pan in the freezer for 30 minutes, while you make the crumble. [Or, if you’re doing this step ahead of time, wrap the pan in plastic wrap and put it in the fridge or freezer. If it’s in the fridge, just remember to transfer it to the freezer for 30 minutes before baking.]

To make the crumble, put all of the crumble ingredients except the melted butter into the bowl of a food processor, and pulse until the oats are partially ground, about 5 or 10 seconds. Pour the mixture into a bowl. Add the melted butter and stir with your hands, squeezing the mixture as you stir to create small crumbly bits. Set aside. [Or, if you’re doing this step ahead of time, wrap the bowl in plastic wrap and put it in the fridge. Take it out about 30 minutes before using, and if needed, use a fork to break up any giant clumps that have hardened.]

Bake the frozen shortbread until pale brown and firm when touched, about 50 to 55 minutes. Remove from the oven, and raise the oven temperature to 350°F.

To assemble the bars, spread the jam over the shortbread crust, and then top with the crumble, evenly sprinkling it over the surface and squeezing bits of it together to create irregular nubs. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until golden brown on top, rotating the pan halfway through for even baking.

When the pan is cool enough to handle but still warm, run a sharp knife around the edge of the pan to loosen any jam that may have stuck. Remove the ring. Completely (or mostly, anyway) cool the bars on the pan base before cutting into wedges.

Note: These bars are best when eaten in fairly short order. After three days or so, the flavors taste less clear.

Yield: Boyce says 10 wedges, but these bars are rich, so I’d say more than that. Maybe 12 to 16 wedges, depending on the size you choose.

90 Comments:

Blogger Margarita said...

Reading this recipe is making me fall in love with it... I have all the ingredients I need for the dough and the crumble... as for the jam, I have tons of frozen fruit that I can turn into a jam of some sort! Can't wait to try this!

3:01 PM, March 21, 2012  
Blogger Eva / Sycamore Street Press said...

I would never hear "rye crumble bars" and think, "Ooh, I have to make those." However. I started reading your description and the little story you created around these little treats, and now I have no choice. Your writing (as usual) has a way of winning me over. So now I have to make them. (Or maybe I can convince my husband to do the baking so I can just do the eating?)

3:07 PM, March 21, 2012  
Blogger M. Bloom said...

hmmm... filling a crumble with wood putty does, indeed, sound dreadful. i think i'll stick with jam, too!

thank you for the, as always, delightful post and intriguing recipe...

mb

3:13 PM, March 21, 2012  
Anonymous Victoria said...

This sounds yummy, but, like Eve, it's your description that gets me, not the words Rye Crumble Bars.

This year I have made a delicious pecan cake that you strew jam over and top again with softely whipped cream.

Maybe this is my year of jam.

Continue to be well.

3:25 PM, March 21, 2012  
Blogger FoodieNextDoor said...

I've never been to one to bake with anything other than all purpose flour, simply because I'm always worried that if I buy whole wheat flour or buckwheat flour or, in this case, dark rye flour, that I will not use all of it and it will just go rancid in my pantry... but you make this recipe sound good enough for me to take the risk and just try it.
And, as always, your pictures look lovely.

3:50 PM, March 21, 2012  
Anonymous Heather said...

Those bars are fantastic, I agree, as are the Chocolate Chip cookies. But do not, I repeat, do not overlook the Gingersnaps. You will likely not make this mistake but, just in case, I wanted to encourage you to give them a try as well.

3:54 PM, March 21, 2012  
Blogger thinking of the days said...

I won't be making the crumble bars for a while.Firstly I'm on holiday in Western Australia(whoopee!)and secondly all sorts of treats will be off the menu for a while.

Like you,I'm podgier than I used to be, but unlike you I can't use pregnancy as an excuse.Lots of lovely lithe,bronxed AUssies on the beaches...and then there's me!

Re the writing....so great that you're feeling this way.I brought my mss with me and sitting , having time to think is wonderful.So many new ideas flowing

4:17 PM, March 21, 2012  
Anonymous Stephanie said...

Oh, this takes me back to my childhood. . .

I have a sneaking suspicion that I made a raspberry crumble bar (sadly without rye flour) about once a week between the grades of 6 and 8.

Thank you for this much more "adult" concoction!

4:40 PM, March 21, 2012  
Anonymous Ilke said...

Wish you good luck with the rest of the book. I am sure these little sweet breaks would help :) I am glad you are not tired anymore!

5:10 PM, March 21, 2012  
Anonymous A Plum By Any Other Name said...

Gosh. I've been trying to find a use for the meyer marmalade I made a while back. I'm not quite sure how the lemon would work with the rye. I must admit, I'm wrinkling my nose a bit at the thought, though I don't really know why. I wonder how light rye might work ... but I hate to go against the advice of both you and Boyce. Seems to be asking for it.

Nevertheless, this looks to be another recipe for the rolodex.

5:16 PM, March 21, 2012  
Blogger Lindsey Marie Greene said...

I was not hungry until I read this post. Now I am hungry for a dish that you say is very time consuming...what to do???

5:41 PM, March 21, 2012  
Blogger Lia said...

I am going to try these with my homemade pear butter! Thanks, Molly.

6:06 PM, March 21, 2012  
Blogger ashley said...

yum! this looks tasty! congrats on your baby!

6:19 PM, March 21, 2012  
Anonymous Marie-Claude said...

Seriously Molly, I should stop reading your blog when I'm hungry... ;-)

6:34 PM, March 21, 2012  
Anonymous Emily Rae said...

Oh this recipe is sososo good. I made it several weeks ago with barley flour, but I think the rye flour original will be my weekend baking project. I reduced some rhubarb-vanilla bean jam for the first batch.

6:52 PM, March 21, 2012  
Blogger Kathleen said...

I own Kim Boyce's book, have made many recipes from it, and have NEVER been disappointed. I *love* these bars. Worth every second of work. And I don't think they're that hard. I'm a pretty green baker & chef and pulled them off without a hitch :) YUM!

8:10 PM, March 21, 2012  
Anonymous Stacy said...

You know, I WAS daunted by the number of components when I first saw this in the book, which is rather sad, considering that THREE isn't all that many. But upon your recommendation, I will have to return to this!

So glad to hear that the writing is going well, from where you're living inside that story. It's a good reminder of the wonder of writing. Continued good luck to you in that!

9:07 PM, March 21, 2012  
Blogger Marco North said...

Ah, that subtle shift has begun. The writing changes in subtle ways. What inspires you is going through that amazing transformation into parenthood.

Wonderful.

9:09 PM, March 21, 2012  
Anonymous Amrita said...

I have to be honest here - I'm not a very big fan of rye, bars or not. But these remind me of our flapjacks here in England, although without the shortbread and jam slathered on top.

As always, a great post!

10:59 PM, March 21, 2012  
Anonymous Katie said...

Yum! I happen to have a little rye flour that needs using up and was thinking of turning to Good to the Grain for inspiration. Thanks for the push! I wonder how these bars would turn out with apple sauce in place of jam? I also have some of that in the freezer that needs using.

11:50 PM, March 21, 2012  
Blogger Payal Shah said...

I just made your marmalade cake with blood oranges and it was sublime! i can't believe i waited this long to make it. Also, Congratulations on some exciting news - baby and back to work.

11:53 PM, March 21, 2012  
Blogger Victoria said...

I agree with your rye flour comment - only mine is a couple of years old. Wonder if the cake is delish enough to compensate for that. Listened to your hard candy episode on the train home today, guffawed like a mad woman.

12:26 AM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous Christophe said...

Hope the stupid jokes don't improve too much...I for one am looking forward to them!

3:45 AM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous Caffettiera said...

I'm pretty much ready to walk on hot coals for Kim Boyce. I have made the pretzels from the same chapter and the rustic rye dough and... ahem, have I already named all the recipes in the chapter here?! but this one has escaped my attention so far. Thank you for putting things right here. Now, back to work, both of us.

5:26 AM, March 22, 2012  
Blogger Jade said...

I LOVE that book! It's one of my favorites (and I have many to choose from!) Those crumble bars are really yummy (provided to don't try to "healthify" them too much, which I have tried :)). Sometimes, you just have to accept the butter.

6:10 AM, March 22, 2012  
Blogger karan said...

This looks so yummy. Every time I read something about you and that bump to grow, I just smile. When the book is done, you'll have to come back to The Bayview School of Cooking and do another class!

6:44 AM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous Gayle said...

I was thinking raspberry. Until you said apricot. So now I might have to make two, because half and half sounds like too much of a pain....

no more rye crumble bars no more rye crumble bars no more rye crumble bars no more rye crumble bars no more rye crumble bars.....ha!

7:03 AM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous paige said...

my husband is off all-purpose flour. so i'm looking for recipes without. what would you suggest i substitute it with?

7:26 AM, March 22, 2012  
Blogger Anna said...

There are lots of recipes I haven't tried in good to the grain because I think maybe I won't like the taste of, say, rye flour. Now I am inspired to try this one and more. Thanks!

7:44 AM, March 22, 2012  
Blogger The Yellow Door Paperie said...

I made these last night and all I can say is WOW. They were sooo good.

8:03 AM, March 22, 2012  
Blogger Brenda Sloan Stevens said...

Congratulations, Molly. I'm so happy for you!

8:44 AM, March 22, 2012  
Blogger Laurian said...

I just read your post about being pregnant, so congratulations. Then i read on a bit and saw where you wrote about a book called "When the sky is like lace" and caught my breath. That was my favourite book that my dad used to read me when i was a child - I am actually from Australia, and when i was older we tried to look for it but could not remember what it was called or whom it was buy. To cut a loooong story short, my Dad managed to track down the author and for my 18th birthday got me a signed copy. It is something i cherish. Also felt very close to home as we are having a baby on August 1st!

8:49 AM, March 22, 2012  
Blogger Lisa Duran said...

I can totally relate to you feeling like you were writing around your story. It's such a frustrating, "what makes me think I can write" kind of place, isn't it? The only thing that calms me down when I'm there is knowing that I'm there because I'm headed in the wrong direction and trying to force something to work. Eventually, as you said, the Universe turns me in the right direction, the clouds part, and writing is amazing and fun again...until the next time I get lost. Happy writing!

9:23 AM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous Kate @ Savour Fare said...

Those look delicious. What kind of jam did you use? My default is raspberry, which, lets' face it, is pretty much good on everything (including a spoon), but I imagine this could be brilliant with orange marmalade in a sort of homage to Swedish Limpa bread, or even the jar of gooseberry jam from Ikea I cracked open this morning.

Enjoy the second trimester energy spurt. I didn't realize how good I was having it until I hit 30 weeks, and now I'm tired again, and unable to sleep at night, which is so NOT FAIR. I just want to take two days off from life and sleep. Preferably on a memory foam mattress. On the beach. With someone bringing me umbrella mocktails.

9:59 AM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous sarah u. said...

weird question, i know, but where did you get your chairs? after twelve years of disliking our chairs, we are on the hunt for some we like and i like the tops of the backs of yours. (it is pretty much all i can see, besides a slice of blue??).
p.s. your first book is EVERYTHING a cookbook should be EVERY TIME. i love it.

10:36 AM, March 22, 2012  
Blogger meg said...

Kim's book is pretty wonderful. Everything I've made from it has turned out delicious, hearty, and even soul-soothing. It's good to hear you're back at your desk and in the thick of it. A good place to be by any estimation.

10:49 AM, March 22, 2012  
Blogger Jess said...

I am here to report that these bars are excellent, excellent with apricot jam.

So glad you've found your way back inside, M. The best part of the job is exactly as you say, or, as Joan Didion put it, "What we learn from doing it is what writing [is] for."

xo.

11:25 AM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous Leisa said...

Wow... these look amazing and guilty in a healthy way, if that makes sense! Anything filled with jam is on my favorites list. Thanks for sharing!

11:25 AM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Molly
When I get your blog email, I stop whatever I am doing to read it. You words fill me with enthusiasm. Your enthusiasm. I think I speak in behalf of all your followers when I say a massive thank you for your blog and your fab photos and scrummy recipes. Susie

11:31 AM, March 22, 2012  
Blogger Two Chicks Cater said...

I have made these bars and have this great book ! I have been addicted to her bran muffins lately they are stellar ! LOVE HER!
On another note I'm coming to Seattle in July, anxious to check Delancey Pizza !

12:22 PM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous Charlotte said...

He Molly - these look yummy. Of course any crumble bar with oodles of jam in it should be delicious. I'm trying not to make them myself as I would eat them all - myself and that would be a bad thing.

Very glad the writing is going well and that the tired has gone (for now). Enjoy!

3:18 PM, March 22, 2012  
Blogger Molly said...

Hi, all -

Popping in to answer a quick question...

Sarah U., the chairs are Danish, and we bought them at an antique mall here in Seattle, down south of the stadiums. (I'm blanking on its name. Sorry!) We found them when we were looking for furniture for Delancey, but they're too dainty for restaurant use, so we kept them ourselves. They're teak, mid-century, and the seat is covered in black leather. Best of luck on your chair hunt!

3:31 PM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous Willa said...

Oh my goodness. Crumble bars are a particular weakness of mine. I just stumbled recently upon the most delicious peach ginger jam that would pair oh-so-beautifully with the rye. I'm definitely going to try this out!

3:51 PM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous Leslie said...

Hi Molly,

This recipe looks amazing. You have such a talent for finding great recipes! I was wondering if you could suggest a substitution for the rye flour since I do not have any on hand. Is there anything other flour that you think would do these bars justice?

Thank you!

5:13 PM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous Full-Flavored Life said...

Yum!! These look delicious!

6:05 PM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous Cheryl said...

I read an interesting letter to the editor in today's NYT in response to Jhumpa Lahiri's piece about writing that appeared in the paper a few days ago. (Here's the letter: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/22/opinion/the-art-of-writing-the-storys-the-thing.html) I liked these lines in particular: "Language is the handmaiden of story, not the other way around. Master story. Everything else is gravy." It sounds to me like you're mastering story.

Also, I have a lot of rye flour in my freezer, so a million thanks to you and the wonderful Kim Boyce for giving me the perfect way to use it.

6:12 PM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous Andrea said...

Thanks Molly for highlighting these: I bake from Good to the Grain all the time and seriously had never noticed them (maybe it's the recipe header about them requiring lots of components that switches on the blank part of my brain). And compartmentalising the stages seems like a great way to prepare for baking with a baby on the hip, when I imagine all things get done in short snatches... Good luck with the writing!

8:51 PM, March 22, 2012  
Anonymous Kamila said...

I stumbled upon this 19th-century invention on a blog of found images and thought of your post and the fact that your husband had to check if you're breathing after the alarm went off. It's incredibly tangential to rye crumble bars but at the very least I hope it makes you smile. :)
http://longstreet.typepad.com/thesciencebookstore/2012/03/history-of-dropping-things-on-waking-people-from-sleep-.html

9:10 PM, March 22, 2012  
Blogger Mikey F. said...

Goodness, everytime I come here I leave smiling like a total idiot. Your writing is just brilliant and that recipe is coming over to me...

Cannot wait for your second book, "A Homemade Life" has been re-read a couple of times already.

Hugz,
M.

2:33 PM, March 23, 2012  
Blogger Oana said...

So cool. I love how you can do this recipe in parts *over days*. How awesome. Glad to hear you are feeling less tired and that the universe is coming through. Love that universe.

3:57 PM, March 23, 2012  
Blogger Angie said...

Glad to hear that you are feeling better! And the recipe sounds great!

6:41 PM, March 23, 2012  
Blogger Joy said...

glad to know that things are chugging along well!

9:58 PM, March 23, 2012  
Anonymous molly said...

oh HO, i just happen to have some rye flour to use up, also. thanks for drawing attention to this recipe, which i had somehow managed to miss.

and thanks, universe, also, as we all win when another wizenberg book gets to this point.

9:47 AM, March 25, 2012  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow...I saw your photos and description and had to make this yummy dessert (and it turns out, today's breakfast). I had some rye flour left over from making bread, and I don't think that I'll use any of the rest of it to make bread, just these bars. They were amazing with raspberry preserves as the filling!

Congrats on your upcoming little one...I too, have my first in utero, and theses bars were exactly what I wanted (which is really saying something as almost nothing is "exactly what I want." Thanks for sharing another wonderful recipe!

11:48 AM, March 25, 2012  
Anonymous Lawrence said...

I love anything with oats and brown sugar. I will have to give this a try. We love oat meal pancakes made with brown sugar.

1:44 PM, March 25, 2012  
Blogger Margaret Benbow said...

Superb recipe, and you're right--it's always worth using really good jam! (I'm remembering the Bismarcks I bought at a neighborhood bakery as a kid, and they were perfect in every way--puffy, crispy, golden brown and swooning with powdered sugar--but inside, reeky-red over-sweet preserves.)

Just as congratulations that you're expecting, I'll pass on an old wives' tale: if you're having little or no morning sickness, it's likelier to be a boy.

8:26 AM, March 27, 2012  
Anonymous Kai said...

I've made the following mistake with Kim Boyce's recipes before, and I would like to warn you all away from doing the same - when the woman says "kosher salt," she MEANS kosher salt. I unthinkingly used sea salt for this recipe and the salted peanut butter cookies Molly's posted previously, and in both cases they were inedible. Be warned, people! Go kosher or go home!

10:00 AM, March 27, 2012  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I made these bars yesterday, and they were a HUGE hit with my non-dessert-eating husband. (made them with strawberry preserves). Molly, a huge thank you for another terrific post. Congratulations on your little one, as well!

12:16 PM, March 27, 2012  
Blogger Sense of Home Kitchen said...

So glad you took the time to share this recipe!

~Brenda

4:02 PM, March 27, 2012  
Anonymous Christine said...

I know how you feel. I'm finally in my third trimester, and during the first two, I could not motivate myself to do anything, especially cook. Which was a bummer, because I usually enjoy it. I actually just finished making banana bread, and I am starting to feel like my old self again. Good luck staying motivated!

4:21 PM, March 27, 2012  
Anonymous Agnes said...

Oh how lovely! In Denmark we eat dark, sour rye bread all the time (no caraway seeds, though), but I am always on the lookout for other ways to use the flour. AndIi have a couple of glasses of homemade mirabelle jam from last summer in the fridge - I'll have to give this recipe a try!

4:56 AM, March 28, 2012  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Love Kim Boyce's book. I made these bars last night and devoured a quarter of the batch before I could stop myself! They are dangerous! I was in such a hurry to try them that I skipped the 30 min freeze time and didn't grind up the oats (partly b/c I like big chewy oaty bits) and they still turned out amazing. Also a great way to use up all the random jars of jam that are lying about my pantry.

7:52 AM, March 28, 2012  
Anonymous Grandma Kat @ Easy Recipes Land said...

This looks good - I need to give this recipe a try!

Thanks,

Grandma Kat
XOXOXOXOXO

12:52 PM, March 28, 2012  
Anonymous Hilary said...

Thanks Molly, you inspired me to buy some rye flour and make these! I couldn't quite see why the base needed to be cooked first (let alone frozen) so I froze the base for a short time only (while I made the crumble) and then threw the whole lot in the oven for 55 minutes - it worked fine, so there's a step saved!! I used caramel (condensed milk, golden syrup and butter) instead of jam and cut it into squares- they are delicious!!
I love your blog - congratulations on your new "project"!!

2:47 PM, March 28, 2012  
Anonymous Juls @ Juls' Kitchen said...

Here it happens the same, rye flour stays quite a lot on my shelf.
I use it to feed my sourdough starter, a tiny amount every time, and nothing more.
So this sounds really like a brilliant recipe - I bet my father would love it.

I came here following the advice of a good friend of mine on 'someone amazing in food writing'... she was definitely right, you won a faithful reader!

1:57 PM, March 29, 2012  
Anonymous Marissa @ Pinch and Swirl said...

Glad to hear that spring in your step. I flipped right by this recipe in Kim Boyce's GttG - mistake! Have to try it. Thanks Molly.

3:57 PM, March 29, 2012  
Blogger caroline said...

Not only did I have a big bag of rye flour that needed a purpose, but I also had exactly 1.5 cups of homdemade raspberry nectarine jam from last summer. So this was the perfect recipe. I realized at the last minute that I didn't have the oats, so I substituted a cup of panko and skipped the food processor step. It gave the topping a nice crunch! The bars came out great, almost sickeningly rich but delicious nonetheless. Now I'm wondering if this could be made savory-- let's say you replaced the sugar with pecorino and filled it with a tomato jam? I might have to try during tomato season.

Oh, and one tip-- don't spread your jam all the way to the edge like I did. It will ooze out, get burnt, and become fused to the sides of the pan.

12:42 PM, March 31, 2012  
Blogger marilouguy said...

Thank you for posting this recipe. I made the crumble bars last night with the mixed berry jam my son's girfriend gave me for Christmas. It was the best! I had a the last slice for breakfast with tea.

5:56 AM, April 01, 2012  
Blogger Susie Tenzer said...

thanks for a beautiful looking recipe, your writing style is amazing!

9:42 AM, April 01, 2012  
Anonymous Gary from WV said...

Hi Molly,

Made these for a dinner party this evening (I always bring dessert). Used cherry preserves for the filling and it worked out really well. Very well received - clean plates all around the table except for Amy, who never eats all her dessert, anyway. I'll definitely do this one again- thus, a "keeper". The only glitch I had was that it was a little tough getting it off the springform bottom - maybe I'll use a little buttered parchment next time. THANKS!

7:43 PM, April 01, 2012  
Blogger kale @ tastes good to me! said...

More rye crumble bars. More rye crumble bars. More rye crumble bars!!
;)

8:03 PM, April 01, 2012  
Blogger Brian G. said...

I will have to give this a try. Rye flour goes pretty quick here if I bake bread. I usually put a cup or two in each loaf. We have a home grinder and a 5 gallon bucket of rye. Which is a serious commitment to rye.

Once I convinced me wife that rye flour doesn't taste like carroway seeds unless you add them, it is a staple in our house.

4:30 AM, April 03, 2012  
Blogger Sean said...

We made our first trip to Delancey last week while visiting family and friends in Seattle. Had a great dinner w/our kids and will be back next time we visit.

9:57 AM, April 03, 2012  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I shouldn't be reading this when I am hungry. You make "rye crumble bars" sound so delicious. Thank you for this delicious recipe and making it sound so good I can't wait to make it.

6:14 AM, April 04, 2012  
Anonymous Claire L said...

These look delicious! Can't wait to try them! I just recently found your blog and quickly started bookmarking recipes to try.
I noticed something amusing, too: the list of your recent posts reads like a sentence, "Dear world, I am here to tell you [that] you can count on me [on] December 24 in my better moments to poach a pear; it's my speciality."

6:39 AM, April 04, 2012  
Blogger Angela said...

@Emily Rae, how did it turn out with the barley flour? I'd like to use the specialty flour I have on hand already before getting the rye.

10:44 AM, April 04, 2012  
Anonymous Robert Richards Recipes said...

Are you kidding me? This recipe sounds and looks totally delicious! This is going on my list of recipes to make over the next week. ;-)

11:17 AM, April 05, 2012  
Blogger Maria said...

Dear Molly,

I found your blog a while ago and I have been an addict to it since then. I never wrote a comment before, but I have made so many of your recipes. I love your stories and your photos so much.

You have been a true inspiration and now I have my own food blog, which is only a month old.

I hope you can take a look at it.
www.spoonglish.com

Thank you so much! And congratulations for the baby!

Maria

12:33 PM, April 05, 2012  
Anonymous clémence said...

like this story a lot... and the cake too!

2:05 PM, April 05, 2012  
Anonymous The Traveling Table said...

Mmmmm, can't wait to try this!

http://thetravelingtable.tumblr.com/

3:22 AM, April 06, 2012  
Anonymous wandering educators said...

first, and i have been away far too long, congrats on your pregnancy!!

second, any time you have rye flour, i am IN. thank you, thank you, thank you! off to make them, a perfect treat to share with friends and neighbors.

6:53 AM, April 08, 2012  
Blogger Dharmamama said...

When I was pregnant with my youngest (who's now 13, and nearly a foot - a FOOT! - taller than I), I was *exhausted* the entire 1st trimester. I had gone back to college, and was finishing up the semester, and I would, literally, fall asleep at my desk. I was telling a friend I didn't understand it, and she said, "You are growing an entire person! A whole little human being! Of *course* you're tired!" then she made me soup, and watched my oldest while I napped.

I hope you have friends as lovely, and remember, you're growing an *entire new person*! so be kind to yourself!

4:05 PM, April 09, 2012  
Anonymous kelsey said...

I've just recently started reading your novel and have, for the first time, decided it was time to comment instead of being one of those awful linger-ers who reads, takes away wisdom, and does not leave a bit of thanks. Writing is such a maddening but exhilarating thing, isn't it? I love your description. And the rye bars, yes. I have yet to try my hand at the recipe from Kim but now I definitely must. A hug to you and so much luck for the journey ahead -- with the little one and the writing process... :)

11:54 AM, April 10, 2012  
Anonymous Jen said...

Thanks for sharing! This looks lovely.

I'm assigned to bring baked goods to the office next week (to honor volunteers) and this will be perfect.

Cheers.

9:26 AM, April 11, 2012  
Blogger Melinda said...

Hello Molly! I am bad. I have never actually read through your blog. I have known about you for a long time. I have missed out. I guess, I just stuck to a few blogs and didn't venture further since 2006! But I will have fun reading through your back posts each evening and get to know all about what you love to bake. I will enjoy that!
I see you are pregnant. That is lovely and I will enjoy hearing about your thoughts regarding that! My daughter is going to be 27 soon. She has been the best thing on earth I have ever accomplished. Like you, I had never been a baby person, but she has changed my mind.
I have a bag of dark rye flour sitting on my counter since Christmas time. This recipe looks delicious and I am going to use
it to make it into jam bars! Thank you.
I hope it is OK that I have copied and pasted this to my email address. ( a round about way to ask your permission to copy from you!)
Well, wishing you well from England! Cheerio for now.

12:32 AM, April 14, 2012  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

the bars are good but were overdone on the base - I too would skip the first baking and just do all at once -also avoid jam right on the edges - it burns

7:59 PM, April 15, 2012  
Blogger Julienne said...

These sound delicious. I love anything rye so I can't wait to try these. Thanks!

http://thetemperatequail.blogspot.com

2:44 PM, April 19, 2012  
Anonymous Carly said...

These bars look so, so good. I love baking with heartier flours. I think a lot of sources turn people off from it by making a big deal of telling people that anything but AP or cake flour will result in disaster. While obviously you can't always do a straight substitution with a whole grain flour for a recipe designed for AP, but many of my friends who are not huge bakers read those admonitions as "baking always means using white flour."

Even so, I've never used rye flour in a sweet baked good, and I'm excited to try it. I'll make these this weekend.

4:21 PM, April 19, 2012  
Blogger Elizabeth said...

Man these bars look awesome. I love food that crumbles.

5:26 PM, June 09, 2012  
Anonymous Mike said...

A lot of people take time of from work when they are pregnant. The best thing you can do to increase your productivity is to take care of yourself. When it comes to writing or any type of work your going to have bad days. The worse thing you can do is be hard on yourself because that is not going to help you at all. Taking a break and making rye crumble bars may be the best thing for you. This mental break could just be what the doctor ordered. Let your creativity flow and don't let any emotional stress ruin that flow.

11:09 AM, October 02, 2012  

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