250. Each Christmas Season, I wait in anticipation for Starbuck's delicious "Cranberry Bliss Bars". Beautiful white and red triangular cut Blondie bar, filled with cranberries and chunks of white chocolate. They come nestled in a paper cup, a perfect pairing with a cup of Pike Place, hot and steaming.
Recently, while on Pinterest, someone pinned a picture of, what they called, a "White Chocolate Cranberry Blondie". AAAAAHHHHHH! It was a Cranberry Bliss Bar! I did a little searching and voila', the recipe! And, it seemed to have all the ingredients as the Starbuck's Cranberry Bliss Bar. Only one ingredient seemed different...cinnamon in the Blondie (blonde brownie).
So, I stopped at Starbucks...for research sake, of course. And picked up a Cranberry Bliss Bar, brought it home, and we dissected it, tasting each little part and divulged that it was very close to this recipe.
Now, if you do any searching on-line, you will find there are "copy-cat" recipes for these treats. Like the "Top Secret Recipes" by Todd (recipe here) but it is not the same. There is no crystalized ginger in the recipe but a hint of ginger. Or, "Food.com's " recipe, (recipe here) . But, there is no orange zest in the brownie, only orange zest in the frosting. Now, Starbucks posts the nutritional information for their Cranberry Bliss Bar and you can see the bakery ingredients they use towards the bottom of the page. (Information here).
Choose which one is to your pleasing and try this recipe. Here is the one I made:
Cranberry Bliss Bars
1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 1/4 cup flour
(1/8 teaspoon ginger or cinnamon - Starbucks does not use cinnamon - optional)
1 1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup dried cranberries, (Craisins by Ocean Spray are too sweet. Look for a natural dried cranberry)
6 ounces white baking chocolate, coarsely chopped
1 8 oz cream cheese, softened
1 cup confectioners sugar
1 Tablespoons grated orange peel
6 ounces white baking chocolate, melted and cooled
1/2 cup dried cranberries, chopped
Melt butter and stir in brown sugar and cool. Transfer to a large bowl and beat in eggs and vanilla. Combine flour, baking powder and salt; gradually add to butter mixture. Stir in 1/2 cup cranberries and chopped chocolate. The batter will be thick.
Spread into a parchment lined 13x9inch baking dish. Bake at 350 degrees for 18-21 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Do not over bake. Cool on a wire rack.
In a large bowl beat cream cheese, confectioners sugar and orange peel. Add half of the melted chocolate and beat till blended. Frost the cooled brownie
and sprinkle the top with chopped 1/2 cup cranberries.
Drizzle with remaining melted white chocolate. Cut into bars. Store in refrigerator.
"Starbucks represents something beyond a cup of coffee."