It’s definitely Fall here in New England. The leaves are turning a beautiful range of autumnal colors, we’ve continued our family tradition of going apple picking at a local orchard and we’ve been baking appropriate treats like these Crunch & Crumble Bars.

A rich, buttery shortbread base, topped with your choice of jam and then sprinkled with a nutty, crunchy, crumble topping.

I used jam for my fruity layer but you could just as easily stew some apples or other seasonal fruit and use that instead. Apple Crumble Bars would be delicious, especially with all the freshly picked apples that are available at this time of year.

These got a big thumbs up when I brought them into the office but Little Miss Traybakes wasn’t as convinced this time, but that’s mostly to do with her dislike of any nuts that aren’t peanuts, so don’t rely on her opinion for this one!

Ingredients

Base

4oz/110g butter

2oz/55g sugar

1 egg yolk

5oz/150g plain flour (all-purpose flour)

5-6 tbsp jam

Topping

5oz/150g plain flour (all-purpose flour)

½ tsp baking powder

4oz/110g butter

2½oz/70g brown sugar

1½oz/40g chopped nuts (I used pecans)

Method

1. Preheat oven to 180C/350F and line a 8″/20cm square tin.

2. Beat the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Then gradually add the egg yolk with the flour to make a soft dough.

3. Press into the tin and bake for 15 minutes.

4. Remove from the oven and (very carefully!) spread with the jam while the base is still warm.

5. (You can do this stage while the shortbread base is baking). Rub the butter into the flour and baking powder. Then stir in the sugar and nuts and sprinkle the mixture over the jam.

6. Return to the oven and bake for a further 35 minutes or until golden.

7. Remove from the oven and leave to cool. Cut into slices and enjoy!

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