Everybody loves cranberry bliss bars around the holidays! These were inspired by those, but are definitely better as the base is a chewy sweet brown sugar cookie, the white chocolate is homemade, and the sweet smell of orange zest lingers around the house. You'll be sharing these over coffee all season long. If you can find or want to order vegan white chocolate chips online, then just skip this first part of the recipe. But it's actually super easy and totally worth the little bit of extra effort to make the white chocolate from scratch.
white chocolate ingredients:
4 oz. raw cacao butter (I bought an 8 oz bag and used half)
2/3 C powdered sugar
2 tsp soy milk powder
Combine powdered sugar and soy milk powder in a small bowl. In a double boiler melt the cacao butter until it's liquid, then remove from the heat and whisk in the powder a spoonful at a time.
You could use a chocolate mold/silicone mold if you like, but I don't own one. So you can line a small baking sheet with parchment paper and make sure it's well placed. I used these clips to hold a couple of the sides flat.
Then pour the liquid onto the parchment and let it settle evenly. Refrigerate it for 20-30 mins. until it's solid or until you're ready to add white chocolate chunks to your cookies.
cranberry bliss bar ingredients (enough for a 9" x 9" pan):
1 tbsp ground flax
3 tbsp water
1 1/4 C all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/3 C coconut oil (melted)
3/4 C packed light brown sugar
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 C dried cranberries
1/4 C white chocolate chunks (or chips)
Preheat the oven to 350F. In a small dish whisk the ground flax with water until well combined and set it aside for 10 mins to gel. In a large mixing bowl combine the flour, baking powder, and sea salt with a fork. In a separate bowl stir together melted coconut oil, brown sugar, and vanilla. Then stir in the flax and water mixture which should be thicker by this point. Fold the wet mixture into the dry mixture until it's about half combined, then add in the cranberries and white chocolate and continue to mix with your hands to get everything well combined.
Cover a 9" x 9" baking pan with parchment. Press the batter into the pan evenly making sure it fills to the edges. Bake for 14 mins. Allow the cake to cool completely out of the pan on a baking rack before icing.
orange yogurt glaze ingredients:
1 C powdered sugar
2 tbsp vanilla flavoured coconut yogurt
1/4 tsp fresh orange juice
1/4 tsp orange zest
1 tbsp dried cranberries, finely chopped
Using a hand mixer beat together all of the ingredients (except the cranberries) until smooth.
Spread all of the glaze evenly on the top of the cake with a large icing spatula and take it just to the edges so it drips down the sides a little bit.
Sprinkle the chopped cranberries on top of the icing. Let this sit until the icing has hardened before slicing into bars. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.