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Florentine Bars

A menagerie of tastes and textures, these chewy, candy-like bars are great for either an elegant or casual holiday celebration.

Florentine Bars

Florentines are delicate biscuits studded with almonds, dried fruit and coated in chocolate.
Prep Time15 mins
Cook Time45 mins
Cooling1 hr
Course: Dessert
Cuisine: French
Keyword: christmas cookies, Cookie Bars, Florentine Bars, Italian Bars, Italian Cookie Bars
Servings: 24

Ingredients

FOR THE CRUST, BEAT

  • 1 ½ Sticks unsalted butter, softened (12 Tbsp.)
  • 3 Egg yolks, room temperature
  • ¾ cup Packed dark brown sugar
  • 2 tsp. Minced orange zest
  • 1 cup All-purpose flour
  • ¼ tsp. Table salt

THE FILLING, HEAT

  • 6 tbsp. Unsalted butter
  • 1 cup Granulated sugar
  • cup Heavy cream
  • ¼ cup Honey
  • 1 cup Sliced almonds
  • ¼ cup Dried cranberries
  • ¼ cup Dried tart cherries
  • 1 tbsp. Minced orange zest
  • ½ cup Semisweet chocolate chips, melted

Instructions

  • Preheat oven to 350°.
  • For the crust, beat 1½ sticks butter and egg yolks in a stand mixer with paddle attachment until combined, 3–4 minutes.
  • Add brown sugar and 2 tsp. zest; beat until light and fluffy. Add flour and salt and blend just until incorporated.
  • Coat an 8½×12-inch baking sheet with nonstick spray, line with parchment paper, and coat paper with nonstick spray.
  • Spread crust onto prepared baking sheet with an offset spatula. Bake crust until golden, about 15 minutes; transfer from the oven to a cooling rack.
  • For the filling, heat 6 Tbsp. butter, granulated sugar, cream, and honey over medium until sugar dissolves; bring to a boil. Cook mixture until it reaches 240° on a candy thermometer, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in almonds, cranberries, cherries, and 1 Tbsp. zest.
  • Spread filling over crust and bake 15 minutes; cool on a rack. Chill bars until ready to cut.
  • Remove bars from baking sheet, loosening sides using a bench knife. Peel off parchment paper. Cut bars into 24 triangles using a large chef’s knife.
  • Drizzle chocolate over bars.

Notes

  • The filling needs to reach soft-ball stage, about 240 degrees — a candy thermometer lets you know when you’ve reached it

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Written by Lisa Yarde

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