How could I resist a recipe whose title includes the words: Delicious Party Cookies. So even though it was Sunday morning and my weekend partying was behind me, I decided to take the plunge. Within an hour (did I mention how quick and easy these are), I was having a party in my mouth, albeit for breakfast.
I thought these were pretty good, but then Johanna, a work colleague who has sampled nearly all the desserts I bring in, called me up -- in the middle of a deadline -- to rave about these. Maybe they're even better than I thought. The orange zest is the frosting is not only decorative, but adds a flavor note that contrasts with the very sweet frosting.
Orange bars are three-layer bar cookies, but the base -- a shortbread-like confection -- isn't that distinct in the finished product. The center is a soft pudding-like cake and the top is an orange-infused confectioners sugar based frosting.
The base is made like pie crust, i.e., the fat is cut into the flour. A food processor makes quick work of this task.
and press it down into place with your hands or the back of a large spoon.
Bake it for about 20 minutes, or so. The crucial information as to exact time is missing on the recipe card.
While the base is cooling, prepare the filling. Yes, it's true -- just put all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and combine. This could not be simpler.
Pour the filling over the base and bake for about 25 minutes.
The frosting is also simple. Place some confectioners sugar (no need to sift) in a bowl and add some orange juice "right for good spreading" reads the recipe card. Add some orange zest and spread the frosting atop the cooled cake. (I used Cara Cara oranges, which have a reddish hue, and used the zest from an entire orange, but you can adjust to taste.)
The first few pieces are for the cook.