"Eve's Bars" were my adaptation of the bar cookie that became popular during my childhood, Seven Layer Cookies. On a visit to Jekyll Island, GA, I tried a very similar cookie at the cafe in the Grand Hotel, that had a chocolate rather than graham cracker crust. The light came on; there were lots of flavor profiles to use making these bars! I make several versions of this cookie, but this is my favorite for Christmas. The dark chocolate and dried sour cherries give this humble cookie a little sophistication, and the almonds add the perfect crunch. Look for more versions in the months to come!
Non-stick cooking spray
2 ounces (4 Tablespoons) unsalted butter, melted
3/4 cup finely crushed Oreo cookie crumbs
1 can sweetened condensed milk
1 1/2 cups dark chocolate chips
3/4 cup white chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups dried sour cherries
1 1/2 cups sliced or slivered almonds
Preheat the oven to 350-degrees
Spray a 9 X 13-inch baking pan with non-stick spray; be generous, as these will stick to the pan if it isn't well greased.
Cut two pieces of parchment paper: one the width of the longer side of the pan with enough extra to hang over the ends of the pan by a couple of inches, and one the width of the shorter side of the pan, also with some overhang. Place one piece in the pan and secure the edges with the binder clips, then lay the second piece over that, also securing with binder clips. Spray everything well with non-stick spray.
Combine the Oreo crumbs with the melted butter and mix well. Sprinkle over the bottom of the pan, the level and press the crumbs in firmly using a 1/2 cup stainless measuring cup with a flat bottom.
Drizzle the sweetened condensed milk over the crust, making sure to cover every bit of the crust; take your time and drizzle it slowly, as it is too difficult to spread with a spatula.
Sprinkle the chocolate chips evenly over the pan then the white chocolate chips, cherries, and finally, the almonds. Press down lightly to nestle everything together firmly.
Bake for about 25 minutes, checking after 20, until the center is bubbly. Place the pan on a cooling rack and cool completely.
Remove the clips, and run a table knife around the side of the pan, under the parchment paper. Lift the cookies out of the pan in one piece, using the overhanging parchment paper.
Using a long chef's knife, cut into 24 bars (cut the 13" side into 6, and the 9" side into 4). Wipe the knife with a damp towel between cuts.
Store in an airtight container with waxed paper or parchment between layers. These cookies freeze well, be sure to cover all of the surfaces with plastic wrap and freeze in an airtight container to avoid freezer burn.