Fruits and nuts, nuts and fruits—they pair well, especially on a brown sugar maple crust. For this recipe I chose cranberries bursting with tart flavor along with chopped walnuts to grace the top of the sweet buttery crust.
Part of baking is experimenting with different flavors, combining them to create a surprise for the tastebuds. While I’m usually a sucker for the salty sweet combo, I also enjoy the occasional tart dessert. Fresh cranberries are the perfect stand-in for that flavor.
Raw cranberries are, well, bleh. Their texture isn’t enjoyable to eat and the flavor is like sour cardboard if you ask me. BUT when cranberries are baked in the oven, they begin to shrivel and the inside softens allowing tart juice to bubble out. That tartness adds a punch of flavor to any dish.
For these cranberry walnut bars, the butter brown sugar crust (which came from my maple pecan square recipe) needs something to counterbalance its sweetness. Enter those cranberries bursting with flavor. For an oomph of texture, the chopped walnuts adapt well to both the buttery crust and the tart cranberries. There’s no doubt in my mind that these cranberry walnut bars will bring plenty of flavor to the table!