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Ganache-Filled Brown Sugar Bars

  • ACTIVE: 40 MIN
  • TOTAL TIME: 3 HRS
  • SERVINGS: MAKES 32 BARS
  • MAKE-AHEAD
  1. 1/2 cup heavy cream
  2. 1/2 pound bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
  3. 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  4. 1/4 teaspoon salt
  5. 2 sticks (1/2 pound) unsalted butter, at room temperature
  6. 1 2/3 cups packed dark brown sugar
  7. 2 large eggs, at room temperature
  8. 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  1. Boil the cream over moderate heat. In a food processor, finely grind the chocolate. With the machine on, add the hot cream and process until smooth. Scrape the ganache into a bowl and let stand until firm, 30 minutes to 1 hour.
  2. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 350°. Lightly butter a 10-by-15-inch baking pan. Line the pan with wax paper; butter and flour the paper.
  3. Whisk the flour with the salt. In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat the butter and brown sugar at medium speed for 3 minutes. Beat in the eggs 1 at a time. Beat in the vanilla. At low speed, beat in the flour in 3 additions; the batter will be fairly stiff. Spread the batter in the pan. Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, or until a cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Transfer to a rack to cool completely.
  4. Cover the baking pan with a large wire rack and invert. Remove the pan and peel off the wax paper. Invert the cake onto a large cutting board. Using a long serrated knife, halve the cake crosswise. Spread the ganache evenly over one of the cake halves, leaving a 1/8-inch border. Top with the other cake half. Cover and refrigerate until the ganache is set, at least 2 hours.
  5. Trim the edges of the cake. Cut the cake lengthwise into 4 strips, then cut each strip crosswise into 8 bars. Serve chilled or at room temperature.
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