The other night I was toying around with the idea of creating a recipe that had strawberry in it that had a strong enough flavor to work well with white chocolate. I did not want to use extract. As you know, white chocolate is quite sweet. Anyhow, after falling asleep, waking up and then falling asleep again it came to me-canned strawberries in light syrup.
That is how this recipe came about. It is very rich, having both white chocolate and cream cheese layers in it. Then to make it even better, it is filled with crushed canned strawberries and nuts. Without the strawberries and nuts, the texture can best be described as a cross between white chocolate blondies and cheesecake. The filling just adds another dimension of flavor.
You know some people say that dreamers are just people that can't face reality. To make sure you are not labeled as such, I have provided the recipe below so you can make these bars a reality in your own kitchen! :)
Lucid Dream Bars
1 15 oz can of strawberries in light syrup
1 cup roasted chopped pecans
1 8 oz package of cream cheese (softened)
1/2 cup or 1 stick of butter
3 tsp vanilla extract
12 oz chopped white chocolate
2 cups sugar
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/3 cups flour
First, drain the can of strawberries and reserve 2 tbs of juice in a small bowl. Using a fork or your fingers, crush the strawberries into smaller pieces and place pieces in a measuring cup of 1 cup capacity. All you will need is one cup, if there is any strawberries left in the can, use them up as an ice cream topping. Cover both the strawberries and juice. Place in fridge until needed.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 9X13 cake pan by greasing the bottom. Then line with parchment paper, covering the bottom and leaving some to overhang on the long sides. Grease the face up side of the parchment on the bottom of the pan.
Set up a double boiler and melt white chocolate chips together with the butter. Once all is melted, pour into a large heat proof bowl. Beat in the additional ingredients of 1 1/2 cups sugar, 4 eggs, 1 tsp vanilla extract.
In a smaller bowl, sift together baking powder, salt and flour. Then fold into chocolate mixture and set aside.
Place the softened cream cheese, remaining 2 tsp of vanilla, remaining egg and remaining 1/2 cup of sugar in another bowl. Beat until smooth.
To make the layers, pour half of the chocolate batter into the prepared pan. Then sprinkle half of the pecans over the layer and drop 1/2 cup of strawberry chunks evenly over layer. Then drop the cream cheese on top by spoonfuls and use a knife to smooth it out evenly as best you can. The cream cheese should cover the strawberries.
For the last layer, mix the nuts, strawberries and reserved 2 tbs of juice into the chocolate batter and pour it over the top.
Bake in oven for 35-40 minutes or until done. When done, you will see the toasted edges are starting to pull away from the pan and the whole surface should have a light crust. Remove pan and place on rack to cool. Once completely cool, lift out of pan and cut into squares.