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This bar is finicky to make but so worth the effort. One tray is enough for the season. each cookie looks gorgeous and tastes even better than one expects which is why they are so worth the effort.
Course Bar
Cuisine Canadian Italian
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 48
Author Valerie Lugonja


Ingredients for the Crust:

  • 2/3 cup butter
  • 1 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/3 cup icing sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup whole fresh almonds , peeled

Ingredients for the Topping:

  • 2/3 cup superfine berry sugar
  • 1/3 cup butter , softened
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped glace cherries
  • 1/4 cup coarsely chopped candied orange peel
  • 1/4 cup candied lemon peel
  • 1 t fresh orange zest
  • 1 t fresh lemon zest
  • 1 cup sliced , unbleached almonds


Essential Preparation:

  1. x 15 inch jelly roll pan
  2. lined carefully with foil (see pictorial instructions above), and
  3. buttered with melted butter on the inside of the pan carefully
  4. do not tear the foil
  5. pre-heat oven 350ºF

Keep in Mind:

  1. bake the crust 15 minutes
  2. bake the crust with the topping on it for 13-15 minutes

Instructions for the Crust:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350°F
  2. Melt butter, and cool
  3. Place all other ingredients into a food processor and pulse 8 to 10 times; process for one minute until fine and cakey
  4. Using a fork, stir into butter mixture
  5. (I added the butter to the nut mixture in the Thermomix bowl and it mixed until crumbled; then put it in a bowl and distributed it onto the pan as directed)
  6. Divide dough into 8 potions; situate the 8 portions evenly within the pan (it will be very difficult to pat into the pan as the crust is extremely thin)
  7. Keep working at it (plastic wrap may help); make sure it is even all around the edges
  8. Bake at 350°F for 9-10 minutes until slightly browned and let stand 8-10 minutes, at least, to firm up

Instructions for the Topping:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350°F
  2. Place first 5 ingredients into a heavy sauce pan; bring to a boil
  3. Stir gently and constantly until sugar has dissolved, then one more minute
  4. Mix in candied fruits, zest, and nuts, blending well
  5. Cook the mixture over low heat 6 - 8 minutes or until it begins to thicken and the caramel starts to darken
  6. IMMEDIATELY pour onto the crust, and spread with a BUTTERED off-set spatula (this can be hard as if not done quickly will be too hard to spread and sticky enough to lift the crust)
  7. Bake 13-15 minutes at 350°F until bubbly on the top and the surface has begun to turn brown; do not over bake (watch carefully from 12 minutes on)
  8. Cool completely on wire rack

Making the Florentine Cookie Bars:

  1. Melt dark chocolate over double boiler, and place in plastic squeeze bottle or plastic bag with tip cut off
  2. Remove slab from cookie sheet on foil; cut in half, still on foil, then cut into rectangular bars about one by one and ¾ inches
  3. Zig-zag chocolate diagonally across the Florentine bars, quickly
  4. Store in a tightly sealed container, or freeze until ready to serve