Let's start out with a Peacefood Cafe must have....the raspberry jam spelt crumb bars! We use spelt flour because people with wheat allergies have an easier time digesting it. They are stuffed with jam and perfect buttery crumbs that melt in your mouth. You will never guess that something so rich could be vegan. Well, they are and they're also extremely easy to make!
Raspberry Jam Spelt Crumb Bars [Vegan, Gluten-Free]
- 1 1/2 cups vegan butter
- 1 1/3 cups almond meal
- 3 cups organic whole spelt flour
- 1 1/4 cup cane sugar
- 1/2 tsp. sea salt
- 2 cups raspberry jam
- First, you gather all your dry ingredients. You can use store-bought almond meal/flour or you can make your own by grinding almonds in a food processor. We like to use whole almonds with the skin still on, but any form of almond will do. Mix together the spelt flour, almond meal, sugar and sea salt. We use a whisk to mix it together thoroughly.
- Next, you measure out the earth balance. Make sure it's coming directly from the refrigerator and very cold. You're going to "cut" the earth balance into the dry ingredients. This is what creates the buttery, flaky, crunchy, crumbly texture that you're soon going to know and love :) When we say "cut", what we mean is that you are going to incorporate the Earth Balance into the flour leaving it in little lumps they are completely covered in flour. These lumps are the crumbs! There are many ways to complete this task. One is buying a "pastry cutter", which will to the job for you as you mix. Another way is by using a mixer. You can very slowly paddle the butter into the flour. My personal favorite way is to simply use our hands, slowly kneading the butter into the flour, creating the crumbs with my fingers. If you work it too much, it still stick together as a solid dough (in which case you can add a little more flour or sugar to separate it back). You want nice sized crumbs, some big and some small.
- Once you create the crumbs, the rest of the recipe is simple. Press about a half of the crumbs onto the sheet pan. This is the base of the bar. Make sure it's even and completely pressed down to about a 1/4-inch. Bake this for 10 minutes at 325 degrees. It should be starting to brown along the edges. Pull it from the oven and let it cool. Once it's cooled, spread about 2 cups of raspberry jam (or any flavor you like). Spread it evenly over the entire sheet pan. Take the rest of the crumbs and sprinkle them evenly over the jam layer. Make sure to get the edges well, these are going to be individual bars. Bake for another 10 to 15 minutes until lightly golden brown. Cool and cut 3 x 5 yielding 15 bars. Sprinkle with powdered sugar and enjoy!