Strawberry Basil Blondies

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We were driving back from a wedding a few hours away on Sunday and spent most of the car ride discussing blondie recipes.  It was either that or make Robert listen to another episode of Stuff You Missed in History Class and I'm quite sure he's not as enthralled by that podcast as I am.  Probably because every time we drive Upstate I put on as many episodes in a row as we can fit in... (listen to the episode about Australia's rabbit-proof fence and you'll be hooked forever). 

Anyways! With a chocolate addiction that's been alive and well my entire life blondies have never been on my list of favorites until last week. I had a really delicious one from the dessert bar at URBN and could not stop thinking about the different combinations I could make myself.  

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After we batted a few fruit and nut pairing ideas back and forth I was stuck on the strawberry and basil combination. Our basil plant has been chugging along in this insane Philly heat, and I've wanted to put some in a baked good all Summer.  It's kind of exhilarating to throw a savory element into dessert.  It's a delicate balance of flavor and the blondie batter is the perfect platform for it. 

Strawberry Basil Blondies
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup fresh strawberries, sliced
8-10 basil leaves, chopped
1 egg
3/4 cup light brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
1/2 cup butter, softened


Preheat oven to 325° and prepare an 8" square baking dish with cooking spray or parchment paper.  In a large bowl combine flour, baking powder, salt and set aside.  Using a stand mixer cream the brown sugar and butter until smooth.  Add in vanilla and egg and continue beating until well mixed.  Fold in strawberries and basil.  Pour dry ingredients into strawberry mixture and stir until well incorporated.  Spoon the batter into the pan, smoothing as you go until the batter is even.  Bake for 45 minutes until golden brown. Serve warm.   

download printable recipe here