Peanut butter and jam is a classic and perfect combination, but it suffers from a somewhat childish reputation. But there is a reason children love it - it’s great. The addition of a little flaky salt on the top is enough to make these blondies grown up, but not put off the kids who have tirelessly campaigned for the PB & J movement these many years.
I like to use crunchy peanut butter because it gives a little textural variation. You could go with smooth and add some chopped peanuts if you like, but I don’t recommend using sweetened PB, these are plenty sweet with natural style peanut butter. Don’t be shy with the jam - I increased the jam considerably from the original version, and it was delightful. Do not over bake: these should come out fudgy and gooey, the centre will look just set when you pull them out of the oven.
PB & J blondies:
Adapted from Bon Appetit
½ cup butter, melted
1¼ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp kosher salt
2 large eggs
1½ cups light brown sugar
¾ cup peanut butter (I used and recommend unsweetened, chunky peanut butter)
1 tsp vanilla extract
6 tablespoons strawberry jam
big pinch flaky sea salt (such as Maldon)
Heat oven to 350°.
In a large bowl combine eggs, sugar, peanut butter, butter and vanilla and mix until smooth. Fold in flour, baking powder and 1 tsp salt until evenly incorporated.
Spread batter in a parchment lined 8”x8” pan and press a spoon-back into the batter to create little dents for jam. Dollop jam generously into jam-dents and sprinkle a pinch on flaky salt over the top. Bake 35-40 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the middle (avoiding jammy spots) comes out clean. Let cool and cut into squares.