Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Nanaimo Bars (for the Winter Olympics)

What makes my pulse race, my heart surge and my eyes well up? The Olympic theme music. "Neither snow, nor rain, nor heat nor gloom of night"..., will keep me from the opening ceremonies, closing ceremonies and the two weeks of coverage in between. It's only right that the games be celebrated with one of Vancouver's celebrated foods, Nanaimo Bars. Truth-be-told, I find Nanaimo Bars to be a bit sweet, but being an Olympic Patriot, I'm sticking by them! Fudge is sweet, and we all like fudge right? So cut these bars into fudge sized squares and all will be OK. If you want to know more about Nanaimo bars, follow this link to the city of Nanaimo. I DID changed it a bit, of course :) See you at the games!

Nanaimo Bars

Bottom Layer- A Nutty Chocolate, Coconut Base

½ cup butter
¼ cup sugar
1/3 cup cocoa powder
1 egg beaten
2 cups graham cracker crumbs
½ c. finely chopped almonds, pecans or walnuts
1 cup shredded sweetened coconut
1 tsp. vanilla

Melt first 3 ingredients in top of double boiler (Do it in the double boiler, I did my first batch without a double boiler, and I had a curdled mess after I added the egg) Add a T or so of chocolate mixture to beaten egg, and then another T. Turn heat off the double boiler. Pour warmed egg mixture into the chocolate mixture in the top of the double boiler. Stir vigorously to cook and thicken. Remove pan from bowl from double boiler and then stir in graham cracker crumbs, coconut, nuts and vanilla. Spread mixture into the bottom of a greased 9" x 9" pan. Refrigerate bottom layer while preparing the middle layer.

Second Layer-The Sweet, Firm, Cream Filling

½ cup butter
2 Tbsp. and 2 tsp. cream
2 Tbsp. vanilla custard powder (Bird's Custard Powder preferred, Instant Vanilla Pudding powder if you don't know what Bird's is or where to get it)
2 cups powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. vanilla
pinch of salt

Cream butter, cream, custard powder, powdered sugar, vanilla and salt together. Beat until the mixture is very light, about 5 minutes with an electric mixer. Spread filing over the bottom layer and refrigerate while preparing the top layer.

Top Layer-Solid Chocolate

8 oz good quality semi-sweet chocolate chips
2 Tbsp. butter

Melt chocolate and butter together on 50% power in microwave. Cool slightly. Once cool, but still liquid, pour over second layer, spread evenly and then and chill in refrigerator until firm.

To cut the squares without cracking the hardened chocolate, use a sharp knife that has been warmed slightly before each cut. (Dip knife in boiling water, then quickly dry off before making a cut). Then use a small spatula to remove the squares from the pan. Keep squares refrigerated until serving time. Cue the Olympic Theme music!

Note: I have heard of two other places these are served; New York, as New York Slices, and Alaska, as Yukon Bars.

Thanks for visiting!  Now go watch the Olympics..., with a Nanaimo Bar!


  1. dearest pollywollydoodle
    ohmygawd...those look so yummy...i might just have to come over to your house and let you make them for me...(and by the way...yukon bars sounds like something that a bear leaves in the woods...if you know what i mean?)
    sending hugs...bb

  2. LOL...I am so glad you are talking to me!!! SO glad I might just pack up the leftover bars and drive them right over to your house!

  3. I want to make these bars, but everytime I think about it, I get too lazy. haha. But they're soooooo good!


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