Chewy Pistachio Blondies

I debated calling these Chewy Pistachio Blondies "greenies" because there really isn't anything very "blonde" about them, but Greenies (capital "g") are a well-known dog treat, and I figured that could prove confusing.

And anyway, I think you guys get it.

These super chewy bar cookies will be a hit with any of you that love pistachio-flavored desserts--macarons? Ice cream? Pistachio cake?

If you love those, you will FLIP out over these. (In a good way.)

The deliciousness comes from pistachio paste, which is a confection made from pureed pistachios, sugar, and a few other goodies. It's similar to almond paste, though looser in texture (more like natural peanut butter) and a bit trickier to find. Whole Foods usually carries it, and you can easily get it online from a few sources.

Amazon has this 3-jar deal that I think is totally worth it. I promise you this stuff will come in handy--especially with the holidays coming up! (I may have a few more recipes up my sleeve...)

It's a pretty easy one-bowl type recipe, and it bakes up beautifully. The hardest part (isn't it always!) will be waiting for these to cool before trying them. I actually recommend chilling them in the fridge for a few hours--you'll get perfect cuts + it enhances the chewiness.

I absolutely love the pretty minty shade of green. It looks gorgeous with a sprinkle of confectioner's sugar and a glass of milk. A really simple, but elegant sweet to serve at a party or to give as a gift.

Oh, by the way, while I kept these plain, you could also have a lot of fun adding some goodies to these bars. I bet white chocolate chips or dried cherries would be amazing, or you could even add some roasted salted pistachios for a fun salty-sweet crunch.

Let me know what you decide to try!

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Chewy Pistachio Blondies
These chewy green blondies are made with canned pistachio paste--a sweet confection made with ground pistachios and sugar.
Yields about 20 small blondies.

1/2 cup pistachio nut paste
1 cup light brown sugar (or substitute granulated sugar + 1 teaspoon of molasses or honey; dark brown will affect the color too much)
1 1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
2 large eggs, room temperature
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2-3 drops green food coloring (optional)
Confectioner's sugar, for dusting (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and line an 8" square baking pan with parchment paper or foil so that it overhangs on the sides.

Combine the pistachio paste and sugar in the base of a mixer, and beat until evenly combined. Add the flour, baking powder, and salt, and mix again for 1 minute. Add the melted butter, egg, vanilla, and food coloring (if using), and beat until smooth and evenly combined--about 1 minute.

Spread batter into the prepared pan, and bake about 25 minutes, or until set and slightly golden around the edges. Let cool in  pan a few minutes before lifting out and placing on a rack to cool completely before cutting & dusting with confectioner's sugar.

Tip: Want super clean squares? Chill the blondies in the fridge for 1-3 hours (or overnight!) before cutting. You'll get super perfect cuts.

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