Scandinavian Almond Bars

by cakeduchess on December 17, 2011 · 36 comments

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Baking and sharing cookies is a wonderful way to show how thankful we are for the special people in our lives. These last two weeks the kids and I have been busy baking cookies to share with people we love. 

It’s an honor to be participating in Cookies Across America. What is Cookies Across America? Launched last year, the campaign inspires our community of home cooks to give back to their local communities by baking and sharing cookies. This year, Allrecipes partnered with Nestle Toll House and is asking home bakers across the nation to take the pledge to bake and share cookies with those less fortunate in their communities.

 
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Allrecipes shared with me these fun cookie facts:

  • Allrecipes members viewed 31 million cookie recipes in December 2010, a 21% increase from 2009.
  • · The weekend before Christmas, December 18th and 19th, 2010 marked the busiest days for viewing cookie recipes
  • · 96% of home cooks believe sharing holiday cookies is a good way to show they care
  • · Top recipients for holiday cookies include friends and family, co-workers, troops, first responders, church groups, and the postman.
  • · Sugar cookies are the #1 holiday cookie type. Classics such as chocolate chip, peanut butter and gingerbread also fall into the top 10 cookie recipes.

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Community members of Allrecipes and Nestlé USA have pledged to bake more than 13,848 cookies so far this holiday season.  Visit the Facebook page and YOU can take the pledge to bake for Cookies Across America.

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Taste of Home was kind enough to send me their gorgeous Taste of Home Cookies magazine. Filled with amazing cookies, it was not easy choosing the first cookie to bake from it.
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I fell in love with the Scandinavian Almond Bars and couldn’t wait to bake them. Sort of like a biscotti, these cookies are crisp and rich with a delicate almond flavor. The light crunch from the almond slivers and the soft, sweet sugar drizzle…this is a cookie we will be making every Christmas.

Scandinavian Almond Bars

Ingredients
1 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, softened
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon almond extract
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon 2% milk (I used almond milk:)

1/2 cup sliced almonds, chopped


ICING:

1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 to 2 tablespoons 2% milk

Directions
In a large bowl, cream sugar and butter until light and fluffy.
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Beat in egg and extract. Combine dry ingredients; add to creamed mixture and mix well.
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Divide dough into fourths; form into 12-in. x 3-in. rectangles. Place 5 in. apart on greased baking sheets.
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Brush with milk.
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Sprinkle with almonds.

Bake at 325° for 18-20 minutes or until firm to the touch and edges are lightly browned. Cool on pans for 5
minutes.
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Cut diagonally into 1-in. slices. Remove to wire racks to cool completely.
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In a small bowl, combine the confectioner’s sugar, extract and enough milk to achieve desired consistency; drizzle over bars. 

Yield: about 4 dozen.

What special things do you do to share with your community during Christmas or throughout the year?:)

{ 36 comments… read them below or add one }

Pachecopatty December 17, 2011 at 4:06 pm

Love these cookies too!

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Lisa December 17, 2011 at 4:54 pm

What a great cause to bake cookies for, Lora, and those bars look incredible. They remind me of Mandel Kakor, which is a Swedish version of almond biscotti, although yours are not twice-baked. I can only imagine how tender they are – and the glaze..WOW!

I donated money to a homeless shelter this year. Haven’t been baking like I usually do. I think I needed a bake break for one season! One or two cookies, and that’s it!

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Nisrine M. December 17, 2011 at 6:32 pm

They do look beautiful, Lora. I wasn’t familiar with these but now I want to make them.

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Amalia December 17, 2011 at 7:22 pm

These look gorgeous and super delicious! I love bars like this, they’re prefect on the go! Great recipe :)

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bananamondaes December 17, 2011 at 8:40 pm

These look lovely, I love the almond slivers on top.

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Lizzy (Good Things) December 17, 2011 at 11:49 pm

Yum, definitely one to bookmark!

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Paula December 17, 2011 at 11:54 pm

13848 cookies means 1154 dozen cookies are being baked and pledged to others by people in the All Recipes/Nestle community. That’s wonderful!! The recipient of your almond bars are going to be thrilled. They look wonderful.

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Mari @ Mari's Cakes December 18, 2011 at 12:12 am

A most do for me! Love how it looks, I am sure it tastes great!

Have a wonderful weekend.

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livingthesweetlifeblog December 18, 2011 at 4:00 am

I love how buttery and crumbly these cookies look – - perfect for a cup of tea

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Amy December 18, 2011 at 4:08 am

Ooooh! These sound delicious! Anything almond gets my vote! My family always has almond sweets around Christmas especially cookies!

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Val December 18, 2011 at 8:48 am

These look fab and I’m always a fan of cookies and bars that just need to be sliced into shape – so much quicker than individually portioning them. Happy holidays :)

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Sanjeeta kk December 18, 2011 at 10:38 am

These bars look so delicate & crubmly and are just perfect for the lovely cause you are involved in.

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Carolyn December 18, 2011 at 12:07 pm

Oh my gosh, I love these. They look delicious, with simple, pure flavours. Buzzed.

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Jay December 18, 2011 at 1:03 pm

wow..lipsmacking gooooooooood..:)
stunning cliks..
love your space..
happy following you..
do stop by mine sometime..
Tasty Appetite

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Pegasuslegend December 18, 2011 at 1:13 pm

Buon Natale these are great !

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foodwanderings December 18, 2011 at 3:14 pm

Hey missy just dropping by quickly to say hi even from MA. So these are the cookies you were telling me about they look absolutely delciious and love that they are Scandinavian!! :)

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Gina December 18, 2011 at 6:31 pm

These did remind me of biscotti. Love the almonds, I’ve made my fair share of cookies for the season, but would one more batch hurt, I think not. This is a great thing to do. Wishing you and your family a Very Merry Christmas.
-Gina-

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vanillasugarblog December 19, 2011 at 1:51 am

i must make these soon. been wanting for a while now.
i made them once with European butter–what a difference, so good.

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the actor's diet December 19, 2011 at 1:58 am

how gorgeous! tis the season for cookies!

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Lizzy December 19, 2011 at 2:41 am

Oh, these look amazing! Love the almond flavoring and that scrumptious glaze! Perfect to give away during the holidays, but I’d have to keep some behind to have with my tea :) Merry Christmas, my friend!!!

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Elin December 19, 2011 at 7:15 am

Lora…what a wonderful almond bars…perfect for Xmas :) here is me wishing you and family “Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year :)

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Priscilla - She's Cookin' December 19, 2011 at 7:43 pm

Almond deliciousness – I wish these were at the cookie exchange I went to :) Merry Christmas, Lora!

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A Thought For Food December 19, 2011 at 7:57 pm

Looks fabulous darling! Would love a whole pan of these for breakfast :-)

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Sudha December 19, 2011 at 9:04 pm

Lora,the biscotti looks fabulous!This is a very easy recipe you have here – have bookmarked it and I’m going to try them pretty soon:)Thanks a bunch for sharing!I am following your wonderful blog BTW and am your newest follower!

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Ann December 20, 2011 at 12:59 am

Wow! These are incredible1 They remind me a little of biscotti, but a bit more like short bread! I’m your newest follower and SO nice to meet you! Have a GREAT day – you’ve made mine!

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Monet December 20, 2011 at 3:35 am

I’ve been making a lot of cookies lately, and I’ve been loving sharing them with friends and family. Thank you for whetting my appetite with these treats. Now I don’t want to go to work in the morning, I just want to get in the kitchen and cook! I hope you have a blessed week, my friend!

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Sylvie @ Gourmande in the Kitchen December 20, 2011 at 4:38 am

Those sound incredible! I love anything that involves almonds.

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Tickled Red December 20, 2011 at 1:58 pm

Those look delish! You can send me a batch any ole’ time love, I promise they won’t go to waste.

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Maggie December 20, 2011 at 10:47 pm

Our family makes a traditional scandinavian treat very similar to this called kringle every year. A wonderful and tasty tradition. I love making cookies and have definitely made my fair share this holiday season!

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S Karasawa December 20, 2011 at 11:43 pm

Yum these look SO good! Can’t wait to make them, wish I had one right now!

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Kiran @ KiranTarun.com December 21, 2011 at 4:52 am

Holy yum! That looks so delicious! I love anything and everything, almonds :)

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EA-The Spicy RD December 21, 2011 at 6:11 am

Beautiful shortbread! Love that you’re doing this for your community,

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mellissina2 December 21, 2011 at 11:47 pm

Nagyon finomnak látom,még nézni is jó!!!!

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Alison @ Ingredients, Inc. December 23, 2011 at 10:19 pm

these look fabulous

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Kiri W. December 24, 2011 at 1:33 pm

Looks tasty! I think I’ve tried something similar in Germany, before.

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Jamie December 26, 2011 at 10:38 am

Wonderful cause, Lora, and beautiful cookies! Hope you are enjoying a wonderful holiday season, my love! And your home must be filled with amazing baked goods!

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