Saturday, June 09, 2007

The Secret Recipe

A friend of mine had a baby last week, so I’ll be popping by today armed with my signature snack-food: Delight Squares. I will admit that it is with hesitation that I post the recipe here. I’ve been making these squares since I was in high school – they went with me on trips to Florida with my best friend, and they have been my contribution to many a bridal shower and new mother since then. Others have tried to prepare them – and failed.

You may glance at the recipe and say to yourself, "Oh, I’ve had those before." You haven’t. My mother perfected the recipe and then handed it down to me. What you have had is an inferior, pre-perfection substitute. Here, then, is the true method of preparing Delight Squares.


Ingredients
2 Aero bars (If you’re American, you may need to substitute two regular-size milk chocolate bars – but you’ll miss the delicious sensation of watching the bubbles melt in the pan.)
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
1/2 cup corn syrup
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup crunchy peanut butter
4 cups Special K (Do you Americans have Special K? If not, just give up – Rice Krispies would not achieve the same effect. Perhaps this recipe is meant for Canadians only.)

Directions
1. Break Aero bars into pieces in a heavy frying pan (double boilers are for wimps), keeping back one row from each bar for munching.
2. Add chocolate chips and put on very low heat.
3. Bring corn syrup to a boil in a medium-large saucepan.
4. Remove from heat and add vanilla and peanut butter. Stir until blended.
5. Add Special K and stir.
6. Press into a 9"x9" pan (the larger the better – 9.25" is better than 8.5"). By "press," I do not mean gently pat – I mean take the back of a large spoon and bang away until there is no give left. You want to smash the mixture down until the top is a smooth expanse of sweet, crunchy, peanut-buttery goodness.
7. Pour melted chocolate over top.

(I find that if I pre-measure all the ingredients and set the stove to "Min" right at the beginning, the chocolate is just about ready to be blended with a spatula when I’m finished banging the cereal mixture with a spoon. If your stove is hotter than mine, though, you may find at this point that that the chocolate has burned into a poo-like lump. You may try stirring it, hoping that the stiffness means that it simply hasn’t melted yet, and when that hope fades, you may find yourself simmering with rage that can be released only by means of a fair amount of shrieking and banging of pots. Fortunately, that will probably only happen once – and after that you’ll learn to make up the cereal mixture first and melt the chocolate afterwards.)

8. Chill until the chocolate is hard. Serve cold. (This instruction is very important. While some people may think they are enjoying the Delight Squares after they’re been left out at room temperature for an hour, these people are simply revealing their tragic ignorance.)


Feel free to eat these for breakfast – after all, the primary ingredient is cereal, and the only fat sources are the chocolate and peanut-butter. The squares are high in protein and cover three out of the four food groups in the Canada Food Guide – perfect for snacking while you’re nursing a newborn baby.

43 comments:

Terri B. said...

Yes, indeed we do have Special K here in the USA. The bars look yummy!

Alpha DogMa said...

Why aren't more recipes written like this? The opinionated tone. The "I shall brook no debate" declarations of excellence. No namby-pamby "stir until ingredients are barely moist," but firm guidelines for inept bakers like me. Thanks, B&P, these look awesome.

Beck said...

I'm going to go snivel into my double-boiler now. In part because I'm a double-boiler using wimp, and in part because I can't eat those because of my STUPID FREAKING MISERABLE DIET.
:(

Veronica Mitchell said...

Sounds yummy. I have had (presumptuous, counterfeit) Delight Bars before, but I did not know what they were called.

Christine said...

These sound like heaven. Like i could actually eat a whole pan right now. Please send me a whole pan. Please.

;-p

Mouse said...

Trillian and I discovered Aero bars years ago at a British specialty shop in the town where we went to university. A couple years before we moved here, my birthday gift to her was a case of dark chocolate Aero bars. You have reminded me of something that will be sorely missed when we return to the US--seriously, much better chocolate up here!

Lawyer Mama said...

We do have Special K and those look fabulously yummy. Alas, I am diabetic and will have to deprive my family of those delicious looking bars because I'm sure I would *have* to eat them if they were in the house!

flutter said...

I am pretty sure I'd go into a diabetic coma, but I am telling you what, I'd almost risk it for those, they look divine.

Catherine said...

Yes, we have Special K in Ameria, one of my favorite cereals actually. And we used to call these "Special K bars" and they have been one of my favs since childhood. But I am totally willing to accept that your mother perfected them and I will totally try the recipie!

Angela said...

Oooh looks really yummy. Thanks for sharing, I will try making it and let you know if I was one of the chosen few who actually succeeded!

Becky said...

O dreamy Kraft peanut butter! O how I miss thee!

I've never been a big Aero fan (and I can totally admit that I don't miss the annoying "can you feel the bubbles?" commercials), but I sdo miss Kraft peanut butter...

Omaha Mama said...

Oh - thank you for sharing. How very generous of you. I am also on a stupid miserable freaking diet also, but may just make them anyway. What the hell!

kgirl said...

I'm pregnant, so a) I'm allowed to eat them all after I've made a pan, and b) you get to make some for me after the baby is born, and I'm still going to eat the whole pan.

wordgirl said...

Sweet butter on a biscuit! Those look heavenly!

NotSoSage said...

This went immediately into my Favourites (Recipes) bookmark. And your mother was a wise, wise woman for opting for the crunchy peanut butter.

Mrs. Chicky said...

Oh my lord those look good. I'm getting a toothache from just thinking about them.

Jen said...

First Beck has me making muffins and now you are inspiring me to make bars! Holy yum. I can't wait to try them.

The double-boiler part made me chuckle, anytime I read a recipe in my head I substitute with "pot" every time I read it. I do that with a lot of things actually.

Aimee said...

Delight Bars? Change their name to Crack Bars, because that is what they will be like for me once I have made and consumed them. We do indeed have Special K here in the US, and I can even get my hands on Aero bars! (from the British import shop where my Scottish husband relives his childhood of Flakes, Polo mints, bridies and meat pies. In that order.)

Tye Anderson said...

glad to see you're using kellogg's products.....i'd be unhappy if you did otherwise. thanks for the paycheck!

s@bd said...

it is hard for me to express my love for you, at this point.

my words, they fail me.

ewe are here said...

You know, my bowl of Special K with added fruit this morning just didn't look quite as yummy as your cereal bars....

Hmmmm.

Bon said...

hungry now. off to forage. looking for YOUR house.

Aliki2006 said...

I'm a double boiler wimp, too--I refuse to try anything that involves a double boiler which is strange, since my mom frequently used that method when we were children.

These sound so scrumptious that I just might give them a go.

mcewen said...

Americans have special K BUT it is different from British Special K. What kind of Special K do you have in Canada? Aren't these recipe conversions complicated? Heaven knows what we'll end up with?
What if I wait until we get back to the UK and use their [our] ingredients? -where they have proper Aeros.
I think you should go on a whistle stop tour of all three and report back.
Cheers

Pieces said...

Bubbles? In a chocolate bar? I just don't understand.

Stupid American.

Christina said...

Ooh, those look good. And yeah, as a nursing mom, those sound great as a snack! Thanks for sharing!

Luisa Perkins said...

These are a must-try. I would feel totally fine eating these for breakfast.

Fortunately, I have a source for Aero Bars. Thanks for sharing!

Emmie (Better Make It A Double) said...

No - we have Special K. You're thinking of family-friendly policies and universal health care.

PunditMom said...

All I can say is ... Mmmmmmm!

bubandpie said...

Emmie - You rock. Nice one.

Major Bedhead said...

I can get Aero bars - mint AND milk chocolate - at the market around the corner from my house.

They do look rather yummy....

Jenn said...

Printing this so that in about eight days when I CANNOT LIVE WITHOUT CHOCOLATE is screaming in my head, I can go to our 24-hour grocery store and stock up.

nomotherearth said...

I think I would have a coronary if I found a double-boiler in my house. I certainly wouldn't know how to use it. So this recipe is for me!

Totally unfair of you to post this. PB and chocolate is my favourite combination EVER. No exaggeration. I hope you're not too busy making them for Kgirl that you can't scare me up a batch too.

Denguy said...

Dammit, those sound grand! I have a pregnant friend and I think I'll attempt to make them for her. Attempt.

Karen said...

I'm suddenly very, very hungry!

bren j. said...

Oh man, I want those! When the Husband goes to pick my up from the airport in New B., he has strict instructions about what candy to bring back. Aero is somewhere near the top of the list, right after Kit Kat. Mmmmm....Kit Kat.

Kelly said...

Do we have Special K? Not only do we have Special K, but Special K Red Berries, Special K Fruit and Yogurt, Special K Chocolaty Delight, Special K Vanilla Almond, etc. etc. We don't know quite when to stop in this country.

And oh boy, does that finished produced look darned delightful. Though I'm afraid my sugar-sensitive body just might cave in on itself from the aftermath of those. Yum....

DaniGirl said...

Mmmm, instant craving!

But, I have to ask... if the bubbles melt when you warm the chocolate, why is it important that it be an Aero bar?

And, I have heard that Special K in the USA is not the same as our Special K. Not as puffy, more like corn flakes. But that's just anedotally.

bubandpie said...

Dani - That's why I am (grudgingly) willing to permit substitutions. But don't forget - the recipe REQUIRES you to keep back part of the chocolate bar to enjoy while you're concocting - it's an essential part of the experience!

DaniGirl said...

B&P, I am lurking on your site after dinner, many hours after having "consumed" the post the first time, wondering if it's worth the effort or just too darn hot to give this recipe a try.

Decision made. Off to Loblaws to replenish my Special K supply...

Rock the Cradle said...

My Grandfather used to eat Special K with condensed milk. I still remember that smell, with Chock-full O Nuts coffee brewing. Good memories.

Special K is one of my favorite cereals. And now, even more so.

drool.

Lisa b said...

mmm one day I am going to attempt these

Suzanne said...

Just wanted to share that I made these squares for a party this past weekend---they were a HUGE hit! I personally loved them and was a little annoyed that there were none left over for me to take back home.

Thanks so much for sharing this recipe!