When I was in D.C. last week, on the side of one of their pristine buildings I spotted a countdown clock for the Winter Olympics. Just in case you were wondering, at this moment in time, we are at 14 days, 8 hours, 4 minutes and counting....
I had actually forgotten they were happening this year. Truth be told, I'm not a huge fan of the Winter Olympics. I tend to enjoy the Games held during the warmer time of year. It may have something to do with the climate I grew up in. Sunny California doesn't afford us the opportunity to enjoy wintery activities very often.
Canadian friends of mine love to discuss professional hockey. My knowledge of the game consists of players moving over ice on skates with a hockey stick, while attempting to shoot a disc the size of saucer into a goal. Oh, and I know one of the teams is the Mighty Ducks, thanks to the 90's Disney film. ;-)
I do love figure skating. I'll watch that on occasion. There was a period of time when I was girl that I dreamt of becoming a professional figure skater. I think it was in between dreams of a professional gymnast and ballet dancer. People moving with grace has always been attractive to me. The underlying strength behind it all is the real charm.
What's cookin', eh?
Kind of like these Naniamo Bars -- exquisitely presentable, yet deeply sweet.
The second part of our Daring Bakers' challenge this month, in honor of the Vancouver Olympics, I present these deliciously rich Canadian specialities.
1/2 c. unsalted butter
1/4 c. granulated sugar
5 T. unsweetened cocoa
1 large egg, beaten
1 1/4 c. crushed graham crackers
1/2 c. almonds, finely chopped
1 c. shredded coconut
Melt butter, sugar, and cocoa in a double boiler. Add egg, mixing until cooked and thickened. Remove from heat. Mix in graham crackers, almonds and coconut. Press into the bottom of an 8X8 in. pan lined with parchment paper (or foil).
1/2 c. unsalted butter
2 T. + 2 t. heavy cream
2 T. vanilla custard powder (I used instant vanilla pudding mix)
2 c. powdered sugar
Cream butter. Mix in remaining ingredients, whisking together until smooth and light in color. Spread onto first layer.
4 oz. semi-sweet chocolate
2 T. unsalted butter
Melt chocolate and butter over low heat in a saucepan. Cool. Spread over middle layer and place in refridgerator to cool and harden. I allowed mine to chill in the freezer for a couple hours and then cut them into squares. These treats are quite rich so small pieces go a long way. :)
The January 2010 Daring Bakers' challenge was hosted by Lauren of Celiac Teen. Lauren chose Gluten-Free Graham Wafers and Naniamo Bars as the challenge for the month. The sources she based her recipe on are 101 Cookbooks and http://www.naniamo.ca/.