Here are the recipes from Friday, February 20th’s Morning News with special guest Cathy Speronis… 

Cherry Nut Bars

Recipe courtesy Cathy Speronis Recipe Summary:Difficulty: EasyPrep Time: 20 minutesCook Time: 35 minutesYield: 25 barsCrust1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour2 tablespoons sugar1/4 teaspoon baking powder1/4 teaspoon salt1 stick (1/2 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces1 large egg, lightly beatenTopping1/3 cup honey1/4 cup packed light brown sugar1/8 teaspoon salt3 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces1 tablespoon heavy cream1/4 teaspoon vanilla1/4 cup maraschino cherries – rinsed, drained and chopped1/4 cup pecans, toasted1/4 cup chopped hazelnuts (4 oz), toastedPreheat oven to 375°F.To make crust:Butter a large piece of foil and fit into a 9-inch square metal baking pan (2 inches deep). Blend together flour, sugar, baking powder, salt in a food processor. Add butter and pulse until most of mixture resembles coarse meal with small (roughly pea-size) butter lumps. Transfer into a large bowl. Add the egg and work with a fork until the dough comes together and the fat is well distributed.Press dough evenly onto bottom of baking pan and bake in middle of oven until edges are golden and begin to pull away from sides of pan, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool in pan on rack.To make topping:Bring honey, brown sugar, and salt to a boil in a 2-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved, then boil, without stirring, 2 minutes. Add butter, cream and vanilla and boil, stirring, 1 minute. Remove from heat and stir in cherries and nuts until completely coated. Pour cherry nut mixture over pastry crust, spreading evenly, and bake in middle of oven until topping is caramelized and bubbling, 12 to 15 minutes. Cool completely in pan on a rack. Lift dessert out of pan using foil overhang and cut into 25 squares.

Bourbon Apple Pastries

Recipe courtesy Cathy SperonisRecipe SummaryDifficulty: EasyPrep Time: 15 minutesCook Time: 20 minutesYield: 6 pastries1 sheet frozen puff pastry (half package), thawed3 Granny Smith Apples, peeled, cored and thinly sliced2 Tbsp. unsalted butter3 Tbsp. brown sugar2 Tbsp. honey1 1/4 Tbsp. bourbonWhipped creamPowdered sugarGround CinnamonPreheat oven to 400*. On a lightly floured surface, open puff pastry and cut into 12 rectangles. Place the rectangles evenly on a parchment lined baking sheet. Cover with another piece of parchment and then place a baking sheet on top. Bake in center of oven for 20 – 30 minutes until edges of pastry are golden. Remove top sheet and parchment and bake for another 5 minutes, until pastries are completely golden brown. Remove from oven and cool.While pastries are baking, melt butter in a large skillet. When pan is hot and butter begins to sizzle, add the apples. Cook for 5 minutes. Add brown sugar, honey and bourbon and cook until apples are tender. Put one cooled pastry on plate, spoon  cup of the bourbon apples on top. Cover with another pastry. Top with whipped cream and sprinkle with powdered sugar and cinnamon.

Sagamore Hill Sand Tarts

Sweets, especially cookies, were a Roosevelt weakness. The President gobbled cookies such as these sand tarts as fast as they appeared on the plate. This recipe, particularly cherished one in the family, was found on the inside cover of one of Edith Roosevelt’s many cookbooks. The family offered these cookies to friends who dropped in Christmas morning. Served with hot coffee… 1 cup unsalted butter2 cups sugar2 eggs1 egg divided2 tsp. vanilla4 cups sifted flourCinnamon sugarCream 1 cup butter until it is as smooth as mayonnaise. Then add 2 cups sugar and cream until light and fluffy. Add 2 eggs, one by one, beating after each addition. Beat in one additional egg yolk and 2 teaspoons vanilla. Stir in 4 cups sifted flour. Mix again well. Roll the dough on a lightly floured board until quite thin. Cut with a 2 1/2-inch cookie cutter. The beat remaining egg white just enough to stir it up a bit. Brush the egg white on top of the cookies. Sprinkle with a cinnamon-sugar mixture and bake on a greased cookie sheet in a moderate (350 degrees F.) oven for about 8 minutes. Makes 6 dozen.”—Presidents’ Cookbook, (p. 357-358)


Start to finish: 1 1/2 hours (30 minutes active). Recipe adapted from the Dixie Kitchen and Bait Shop in Chicago.INGREDIENTS:For the filling:15 cups frozen peaches (about seven 10-ounce bags), thawed and drained1 1/2 cups granulated sugar1/4 cup packed brown sugar3 tablespoons all-purpose flour1/2 rounded teaspoon cinnamon1/2 teaspoon nutmeg3/4 cup peach juice (the juice drained from the frozen peaches is fine)1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, cut into small piecesFor the crust:2 cups all-purpose flour1 teaspoon salt2/3 cup Crisco shortening1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter, cut into small pieces1/3 to 1/2 cup ice waterDIRECTIONS:Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Lightly coat a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with cooking spray.To make the filling, arrange the peaches in an even layer in the prepared baking pan. Set aside.In a large bowl, whisk together the granulated sugar, brown sugar, flour, cinnamon and nutmeg. Whisk in the peach juice until smooth. Pour the mixture over the peaches. Sprinkle the butter over the top. Set aside.To make the crust, in a medium bowl, whisk together the flour and salt. Add the shortening and butter, then use a pastry blender or gloved hands to work them into the dry ingredients until the mixture forms pea-sized lumps.Slowly add the water, adding enough and mixing only until the dough holds together. Do not over mix.Place the dough between 2 sheets of parchment paper. Roll out the dough into a rectangle slightly larger than the baking pan and about 1/4 inch thick.Remove the top sheet of parchment paper. The dough then can be cut into strips and woven into a crust over the cobbler (this is the method preferred by Andresen).For an easier crust, invert the crust onto the baking pan and carefully peel off the parchment paper. Trim the crust to fit just inside the edge of the pan.Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, or until the crust is golden brown. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.Makes 10 servings.