Why are these cookies called "Hermit" bars? Maybe because you might want to hide in your house, becoming a hermit and eat them all!
I have loved these spice cookie bars since I was a kid, and have always secretly liked the name.
These are a cinch to make for the non-bakers like me. But tell me why does the molasses drip all over the counter and jar when you pour it in? There must be a better way.
Hermit Bars (adapted from Epicurious)
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
2/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 large egg
1/4 cup molasses
1/2 cup raisins or currants
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
Using a hand mixer is probably your best bet for this thick cookie dough, but I insisted on using a wooden spoon. My arms needed the workout anyway.
Mix together the dry ingredients and then add the butter (which I melted in the microwave), brown sugar, egg, molasses and your raisins and nuts. Use your hands to mix this dough and it will come together nicely.
Spread out the dough on a Silpat or a parchment paper lined baking sheet (the half sheet size) and bake in a 350F oven for 15-20 minutes until dough is set. Let cool in the pan before slicing into squares.
Makes 24 bars.
The smell is delicious and the taste even more delicious. Store in an airtight container, the cookie bars will last 3 days, if they make it that long!