Candied Almond & Chocolate Chip Blondies.

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This morning, I woke to an idyllic winter morning snow, & the reminder that my husband had brought home coffee. After spending two mornings coffee-less, remembering this was enough to make me jump (erm, stumble enthusiastically?) out of bed & straight to the kettle & grinder. Coffee in Bodum, husband’s tea a’brewin, & snow falling. Picture perfect.
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Any excuse to candy almonds is a good one, eh?
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I bought almonds for a parsley almond pesto, & used it for blondies instead. I feel like their future was much more appreciated in this form . . .
Note: Over-saturated photos make me sad, but sometimes it’s just what you have. They are delicious & not orangey in real life, I pinky swear. 
To be quite frank, I have never been a fan of blondies. Growing up, it was hard for me to appreciate anything sweet or dessert-like that wasn’t chocolate. I think I also had a blondie in my early teens that put a bad taste in my mouth (quite literally). It was a poor excuse for a dessert in bar form.But I ventured from my misled preconceived notions & decided to go out on a limb. Besides, these had chocolate & nuts (candied nuts!); where could I go wrong?The original recipe called for walnuts. But I had almonds, so that is what happened. My fave, personally . . .

Fact: can you believe Christmas is so soon? Eight days away-cray cray. I’m excited for Matt & I to spend out first Christmas together. It’s weird to think that one year ago, we weren’t in each other’s lives in any way, shape, or form. Now he’s my husband. Life is mysterious & wonderful.
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These blondies are the perfect marriage of brownie texture & incredible cookie taste, with hints of cinnamon candied bits from the almonds, & the obvious love that was baked into them. All of these characteristics tie together for the perfect bite in every square. Which also makes them great gifts for dear friends.
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Candied Almond & Chocolate Chip Blondies
makes 12 bars
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
2 large eggs, at room temperature
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 cups chopped candied almonds
*Don’t know how to candy almonds? I didn’t either! Super easy recipe here
1 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chipsPreheat the oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour an 8 x 12 x 2 inch baking pan, or line it with parchment paper.In the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream the butter, brown sugar, and granulated sugar on high speed for 3 minutes, until light and fluffy. With the mixer on low, add the vanilla, then the eggs, one at a time, and mix well, scraping down the bowl. In a small bowl, sift together the flour, baking soda and salt and with the mixer still on low, slowly add flour mixture to the butter mixture. Fold the candied almonds and chocolate chips in with a rubber spatula.

Spread the batter into the prepared pan and smooth the top. Bake for 30 minutes exactly. Don’t overbake! A toothpick may not come out clean. Cool completely in the pan and cut into bars.

Source: adapted from Shutterbean
Listening to: Princess Diaries dialogue in the background . . . 🙂

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