Cleaning out my cupboards had been pretty lucrative lately. Today's recipe makes good use of the jar of marachino cherries I bought to decorate a 'trifle' a while ago. (read: a cake that broke when I tried to remove it from the pan and needed to be made into something presentable) After that cake incident I didn't have much use for them until I came across the recipe for Cherry Chews in the book Great Canadian Cookies, Bars & Squares - a compilation of CBC Radio listeners favourite baked goods.
The bar is a snap to assemble - the base is oat-based and the filling contains coconut, cherries and pecans. Once it is mixed up, the filling is poured on top of the base, baked and finished off with a vibrantly-hued cherry icing. The final product is similar in consistency to a butter tart and is very sweet. I cut a piece a little larger for the picture but I think they would be best enjoyed as small squares. The coconut lends some chewiness to the bar and the nuts add crunch. ( I substituted walnuts for the pecans since that is what I had on hand.) Overall, they were tasty and perfect for a late night sweet treat. I also think that the sugar in the base and filling could be reduced for those watching their intake as the icing would provide enough sugar for the whole pan.
Recipe: Cherry Chews