I love this simple recipe for Oatmeal Jam Bars – it’s a super easy recipe, a classic, really, and a great way to finish up any jam that might be lingering in the fridge. These are made from a fig compote and fig compote just seems so right for fall, but any jam will do. You can hardly go wrong.
I always like to add a special little touch to my recipes, so in this one I snuck in a good glug (about a tablespoon and a half) of Brandy into the jam filling and used Almonds in the topping. They’re a great grown-up bar with tons of sweet, sticky flavor.
That same idea would translate to so many jam, preserve or compote fillings – pick whatever alcohol or nuts that you think would go great with the jam your using – or just use a little vanilla, instead, for a more kid friendly option. And by the way, no nuts in the topping is just fine, too. They’re your bars, so you get to choose! Isn’t baking great that way?
Depending on how sweet your jam is, these can be very sweet & they’re very, very rich, so cut them small. The sugar could be cut back, but I’d start with the white sugar and keep in mind that the amount of sugar is in there to help hold the crust together. Do line the pan, by the way, or you’ll never get these out!
Since Jam is a basic pantry item, unless your going high-end specialty, look for coupons. And look for both jam and oatmeal to be at some of their lowest prices from September through October. Stock up.
Brandied Fig Compote & Almond Oatmeal Bars
- 1 1/2 cups Old-Fashioned (regular) Oats
- 1 cup flour
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 sticks (12 tablespoons) butter, melted
- 1/4 to 1/2 cups of slivered almonds or other nut of choice, optional
- 3/4 cup of fig jam, preserves or compote, other other flavor of choice (it’s ok to use a smidge more, but a full cup is too much)
- 1 1/2 tablespoons Brandy or other alcohol of choice or 1 teaspoon vanilla
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8 x 8 inch square baking pan with foil and butter or spray well with cooking spray..
In a medium bowl, mix together flour, oats, sugars, baking powder and salt. Add in melted butter and toss or mix with clean hands to coat and break up into large crumbs. Dump a little more than half of the mixture into the pan and place the bowl with the rest into the freezer.
Pat the crumbs in the pan into an even, cohesive layer with just a bit of a lip around the outside edge. Make sure there are no holes and if there are, fill them in with a little more of the crumbs.
Microwave the jam for a minute or two until it’s just warm and pourable. Stir every 30 seconds. Remove from microwave and stir in brandy or vanilla. Pour over the bottom crust and gently spread.
Remove the crumbs from the freezer, add nuts to the bowl and sprinkle evenly over the jam layer. Very lightly press the crumbs without smashing them, so they will stick to the jam.
Bake for 30 to 45 minutes until the top of the crust is a light golden brown, rotating the pan about halfway through the baking time. The bars will be very melty and will likely be bubbling so judge by color.
Remove and allow to cool completely to room temperature, which will be two to four hours. Remove the bars from the pan by lifting the foil, peel the foil off and cut into bars and serve.
I’ll be sharing this at our very own Throwback Thursday Link party, hosted by Quinn, Alli, Carlee & Meaghan. Click the link to check out our blogs & rules or just click the blue froggy, below.