So fast, so easy, and so delicious! Red Currant Crumb Bars are a great dessert anytime, but also a delicious weekend brunch item! It’s as easy as spreading homemade red currant jam between two layers of crumb topping!
If you don’t mind, Dear Reader, I’d like to continue where I left off in my previous red currant recipe post. My Red Currant Crumb Bars is the third installment of four in my Red Currant Series. If you’d like to read the series in order, start with Red Currant Cake, followed by Red Currant Jam.
THE KITCHEN – NOT EXACTLY A DREAM KITCHEN YET!
Now, where did I leave off? Oh yes, the last of the three French doors. I’ve already briefly explained the living room, so let’s move to the right and talk about the kitchen. I must admit, the kitchen was not love at first sight. I did love the size, the two windows, and that it had about six times the cabinet space we have now in our apartment.
What I didn’t like is that the ceiling was not quite as high as the living room. (And there’s this God awful light fixture that looks like a wagon wheel hanging smack dab in the middle of the ceiling. No worries, that will come down soon and become kindling.) The space between the counter top and the bottom of the upper cabinets is not as high as I’d like. But, the top cabinets are very low from the ceiling, so they can easily be moved up.
In terms of change, there are a few things that need attention in the kitchen. The counter top is in great shape, but I hate the colour. And, there’s a double sink, but I don’t like the shape of it or the faucet. Those are both easy upgrades. And, I’d like to tear up the tile on the floor and replace that too.
THE TALE OF THE WOOD BURNING STOVE
Of course, we would also like to upgrade the appliances and replace the current fridge, stove, and dishwasher with new stainless steel options. Now, let me bring your attention to the worse part. I want you to think of the images of old kitchens you may have seen in books or in a documentary or something. Each one of those images has one constant. Remember, our house is 160 years old. And so, it has a wood burning stove in the corner.
Not too worry though. Before any money exchanged hands, we hired a home inspector. The wood burning stove was not up to code, so it has to be removed. John.e was rather fond of it and it was a selling feature for him. I don’t mind a wood burning stove being in the house, but I did not favour it in the kitchen. Anyway, it will be coming out and will most certainly make lots of room for a custom pantry; don’t you think?
I’m not sure how to explain the last part of the main floor. There’s that door that leads to one room which houses a toilet, and vanity, a washer, a dryer, and a deep freeze. Our belief is that it was once just a laundry room, but as the previous owners aged, the need for a small half bath on the main floor became a priority. We are going to install a wall to separate the room, creating a real half bath and a real laundry room/mud room with a back door exit.
The only other thing on the main floor is another door across from the bathroom that leads into the unfinished basement. (It’s so creepy down there. I’m going to look into renting it out to horror movie production companies.) Then, there’s a small walk-in closet and a small pantry that has been built in under the stairs leading to the second floor. (Think Harry Potter’s room under the stairs!) I’m sure this will all make sense when I post our Annual Christmas Post with photographs.
RED CURRANT CRUMB BARS
So, Red Currant Crumb Bars – these came to be because I wanted to showcase a way to use up Red Currant Jam other than just spreading it on your morning toast. I thought of a list of ingredients that would combine well and work for both the base of the bar and the crumb topping too.
Oats, coconut, butter, brown sugar, etc., were the first ingredients that came to mind. And, since Red Currant Jam has a very tart flavour, I wanted the base of the bar to be sweet and thick so that it would help to balance the tartness of the jam. These were very well received and a hit with John.e. In fact, I’m writing this post up the day after and all 16 of those bars are gone!
The next and final red currant recipe post will be published in a few days. In that post, I’ll take you upstairs and tell you about our plans for that. Stay tuned!
Red Currant Crumb Bars
- 2 cups rolled oats
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 cup unsweetened dried coconut
- 2 cups flour
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 ½ cups butter
- 1 1/2 cups red currant jam
- Begin by preheating your oven to 350 degrees and preparing a 9×9 inch baking dish by lining it with parchment paper.
- In a large mixing bowl, add all of the crumble ingredients (except the red currant jam) and use your hands to rub the butter into the dry ingredients. The mixture for form a crumbly topping.
- Press 3/4 of the crumb topping into the prepared 9×9 baking dish. Press firmly to form a solid base for the jam.
- Pour the jam over top and spread it out evenly.
- Next, evenly distribute the remaining crumb mixture over top.
- Bake for 40 minutes. Allow to cool completely before cutting.