Cinnamon Raisin Bars

  • 1 cup boiling hot water
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup oil or shortening
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 medium egg
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups flour

Place the raisins in a large bowl while you heat up the water. When the water boils, pour it over the raisins. They will swell up and absorb some of the water. Add the oil or shortening. The heat from the raisins and water should be enough to melt the shortening, if that is the fat you use. Stir in the sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add the egg and mix everything until the oil is well combined with everything else. Add the baking soda, salt and flour. Mix very well. The batter will be thin and lumpy. That’s alright, it is supposed to be. Turn this batter into a well oiled 9 by 13-inch rectangular pan. Bake at 375F for about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool before cutting. Frost if desired with a simple vanilla frosting.

UPDATE from a reader named Karen; November 2005

I have a suggestion for a variation on the Cinnamon Raisin bars, which are a huge favorite here. For one, it is possible to omit the egg with good results–my baby can’t eat eggs yet, and this way he can have a bite of his big brother’s snack. Also, if you add about a cup or more of shredded carrots to the raisins (before adding the boiling water) and mix as usual, they are wonderfully moist and somewhat like carrot cake. I’m always looking to sneak veggies in wherever I can.

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