Viennese Almond Bars
17 1/2 ounce package sugar cookie mix
cup cold butter
ounces cold cream cheese (half of an 8-ounce package)
cup sliced almonds, toasted and finely chopped
cup seedless raspberry preserves
8 ounce can almond paste
cup sliced almonds, toasted
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a 13x9x2-inch baking pan with foil, extending foil over the pan edges. Lightly grease foil. Set aside. In a large bowl, use a pastry blender to cut butter and cream cheese into cookie mix until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add the finely chopped almonds; stir to combine. Reserve about 1 cup of crumb mixture for topping. Press the remaining mixture onto the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake in the preheated oven 15 minutes or until set.
- Meanwhile, in a small bowl, stir the preserves to loosen; set aside. In a large bowl, combine the almond paste, sugar, and egg. Beat with an electric mixer on medium speed until combined. Beat in milk, 1 tablespoon at a time, until mixture is spreadable. Spoon almond paste mixture in small mounds on crust, spreading evenly to within 1/4-inch of edge. Spread the raspberry preserves evenly over the top of the almond paste mixture. Sprinkle with the reserved crumb mixture, then top with the 1/4 cup sliced almonds.
- Bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the topping is light golden brown. Cool in pan on a wire rack. Using the edges of the foil, lift the uncut bars out of the pan. Cut into diamond- or square-shaped bars. Makes 30 bars.
From the Test Kitchen
Place bars between sheets of waxed paper in an airtight container; cover. Store at room temperature for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months.