I just made Goober, in bar form.
Remember the stuff? I do. Peanut butter and grape jelly, mixed yet separate, in one jar.
My freshman year of college I spent a good amount of time stealing Goober. I used to travel with a spoon down to my friend and cousin’s dorm room (yeah, I lived 4 floors above my cousin and friend, both of whom I went to school with since kindergarten.) and would literally eat the stuff straight from the jar. I may also have sent requests for it over AOL Instant Messenger…as in, “next time you stop by, bring the Goober.” Yep, I totally typed that sentence, and more than once. I am not sure whose mother kept refilling the Goober stash…but, I was always thankful that they did. They probably thought their son loved the stuff, little did they know that the blonde girl upstairs was eating the large majority of the pb+j concoction Ha!
I think my infatuation with this genius combo was because I had never encountered it until I was in college. I lived such a sheltered life. I grew up living old school, with pb and jelly coming from separate jars. College, oh the things you will experience.
I hadn’t thought about Goober for sometime, that was until I took a bite of these bars. ( OK, I saw my cousin 2 weeks ago, and we talked about Goober, but that doesn’t count ) One bite and I was 18 again with a spoon in my hand.
I had no intentions of making these bars this weekend…that was until I kinda, sorta, quite possibly screwed up a batch of grape jelly. My CSA, for 2 weeks in a row, has contained concord grapes. And the only thing I know how to make out of concord grapes is jelly…but come to find out, I don’t exactly know how. The final product, while it tasted just like I remember, the texture was off. More grape preserve than grape jelly. Womp Womp. I still could have used it for morning toast or pb+j sandwiches…no doubt, but I was planning on giving the jelly away, because I don’t eat toast or pb+j sandwiches often enough to use 2 jars of jelly ( I didn’t can them, so they weren’t going to last indefinitely). And I wasn’t about to give away grape something or other…since I wasn’t sure if it was a preserve or a jam or a jelly. Grape spread?
So I baked with it. Surprised? You shouldn’t be.
And these peanut butter and jelly bars…well they turned my kitchen failure into a success. While I wanted jelly for toast…I ended up with a perfect filling for a dessert. A simple change in expectations…
- 3 Cups All_Purpose Flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 2 Sticks Unsalted Butter, room temperature
- 1+ ½ Cup Smooth Peanut Butter
- ¾ Cup White Granulated Sugar
- ¾ Cup Light Brown Sugar, packed
- 2 Eggs
- 1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
- 1 + ½ Cups Grape Jelly (or your favorite flavor) – will spread easier if at room temperature.
- ½ Cup Roasted and Salted Peanuts, roughly chopped
- Preheat oven to 350F and grease a 9 x 13inch pan or line with parchment paper.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, baking powder, and salt. Whisk to combine. Set aside.
- In another large mixing bowl, cream together butter and peanut butter. Add sugar (white and brown) and continue to cream until well mixed.
- Beat in eggs, one at a time. Add vanilla.
- With mixer on low, add dry ingredients and mix until well combined.
- Press ½ to ⅔ of the mixture into the prepared pan. Evenly spread jelly over crust.
- Scatter remaining crust over top of jelly and top with chopped peanuts.
- Place in preheated oven and bake for 30 to 35 minutes until top is golden brown.
- Remove from oven and let cool before slicing.